True Album Review
PRMD, Univrsal Island Records
Released September 13, 2013
Genre: Electronic Dance, Folktronica
By Drew Curran
Avicii’s first full length album had me excited. Through all of the released singles, preview mixes, and ads, I was ready for True to be absolutely amazing. The LP that was produced falls a little short though.
Avicii has always been defined by classy vocal lines and popping, happy synth chords. From when he made “Seek Bromance” as Tim Berg to the hit track “Levels” as Avicii, he has had a certain style that I knew and loved about him. Unfortunately, that Avicii style does not fully translate over into True. Don’t get me wrong; this album is full of songs that perfectly meld his classic, cheerful music with a very new twist, but there are other songs such as “Heart on My Sleeve.” While not a bad song by any stretch of the imagination, it does not have the innate Avicii-ness that I expected from the album.
That is not to say that I do not appreciate what Avicii is trying to do with this album. He is expanding the EDM scene with bluegrass influences and many other innovative breaks from the norm with his music that have not been done by a producer of his caliber. No matter what you think about him and his music, you have to acknowledge that this is a positive direction that, in many ways, works in this album.
With the drop of “Wake Me Up,” which reached the top of the UK charts 45 minutes after its initial release, there was a lot of excited chatter throughout the electronic scene. His style translates well into that particular project, and the track had people all over, even if they were not necessarily fans of EDM, asking, “Wait, this is that Levels guy?” The song became popular everywhere, being played throughout top hits radio stations and even alternative stations in a way almost unseen from an electronic producer in the past.
The album is a great step forward for EDM but not as much for Avicii. That is not to say that the album isn’t successful or produced well, but Avicii should stick to what he does quite well because in this new direction, he deviates a little too far from his beaten path on a few occasions and unfortunately falls short. I would definitely recommend listening to the whole album, and although the style is catchy and smooth, characterized by an old western style piano and a bluegrass acoustic guitar with heavy bass, the whole album just leaves something to be desired even though the new elements work out for him in a way I didn’t expect.
FAV TRACKS: You Make Me, Hey Brother, Dear Boy
WORST TRACK: Hope There’s Someone