2012-The Year of Adam Lambert
Life After Hearing the Trespassing Snippets
Can a Glambert survive on this plate of meagre morsels? A few crudités, a bit of nudité! They’re like a brief encounter that needs to keep us happy until we can fully consummate our mmmmm……relationship? But the not-so-discreet major rendezvous is a month away! Some Hollywood marriages don’t last that long, how will we?! When the deluxe package arrives, I’ll secret it in a dark place until I can prepare the Salon for the full-body experience. I will light the candles and unsheathe the stiletto to break the seal on the pulsing package ….. uh oh, treading into adult entertainment here, but isn’t that what Adam has laid out for us?
Now I have been consuming these little appetizers all day long – nibble here, bite there, a lick or two of salty, spicy, sweet, followed by a cooling cocktail and the final little squeeze. Still wanting more – I play the list through again. You must play each song in order to get the foreplay (musical terminology), the rhythm, the beat, the heat, the climax (musical terminology again) and the final, consummate embrace. The final act delivered with a plaintive and painful honesty almost whispered in our ear and we talk all night or until someone hits “replay”.
The narrative of the album naturally unfolds like a play in three acts.
We’re just warming up with Cuckoo which takes us swaggering through the club walking that walk like we don’t give a fuck, giving us permission to turn it up and get down. We must be Cuckoo to listen to this maniac. But we do and party till they take us away or until Shady takes us into a place that’s so funkin’, walkin’, heavy breathin’, bodies swayin’ in unison like an Argentine Tango – it’s hot in here! Tribal beats move us.
Now we’re ready for the pulsating Never Close Our Eyes thrust and withdrawal in speed and the romantic side with the lyrics. We can hear Adam’s voice clearly on the final version, this anthem just begs us to sing along as we’re set-up for a night we wish would never be over….. the dance speeds up…..
Pulse is racing now until Adam is asking us if it’s Kickin’ In – it’s Adam, MJ, George Michael and Prince all rolled into one bad-ass number. Is it kickin’ in? Like a bucking bronco in a ring! If this song doesn’t bring it home for you – get thee to thy sex therapist – now! The words “honey”, “she” and “girl” coming out of Adam’s lips in any context…. keep breathing… more to come…..
We slow down for a seventies disco favourite – the Hustle! How perfect is Naked Love at this point, holding hands, rhythmically moving together as he asks for that love of ours, disrobed, disheveled, we’re to take it off and try him on – you don’t need to ask twice Adam Lambert! Loved this song since the first tidbit showed up. So retro in lyrics and melody – is there a boomer who doesn’t get a little nostalgic for the disco ball and mirrored dance floor when they hear this?
“work bitch”! Now that we’re all showin’ how it’s done! we’re ready to Pop That Lock! Bit of futuristic sci-fi sound to take us into the realm of fantasy. Crude, raw, edgy, sinfully unredeemable and quite the satisfactory high point of frantic sexual release. Oh the cheek of this song!
Exhale. By now we’re begging for a dark, corner banquet to catch our breath, cool down and it’s at this moment that we’re at our most defenseless yet Adam reaches in even more deeply with Better Than I Know Myself to share with us the dichotomous struggles within his own mind and soul. At this point he reveals a vulnerability we haven’t seen in the previous seven songs which are all swaggery alpha. This is where the rest of the alphabet is introduced, all the way to omega.
His frustration with an inability to communicate – Broken English is at once incredibly personal and a universal theme. The sexual talk and action on the dance floor opens a feeling of deep intimacy and shared emotions. He trusts us enough to open up about himself.
Just when we can’t take anymore, Underneath is the balladic anthem that lays him bare – a declaration of love, a release of carefully concealed truth in torrid detail. As someone said “It’s the new Soaked” and in a sense it is. It’s a show-stopper in a live performance. Love at first listen for those of us who worship Adam’s voice and respond personally to his angst. Ethereal with sweeping vocals and soaring music. Never mind tears, Underneath unleashes the sob sister in anyone made of flesh and blood.
Chokehold lifts out of the darkest depths into which Underneath pulled us yet the sky is still dark. He’s trying to leave but we’ve got a voodoo spell on him – it’s the pleasure and the pain he can’t give us up. Is this relationship getting a little dangerous now?
The final act in this three-act play closes with Outlaws of Love, a plaintive expression of the desire to consummate a forbidden love with public declarations, not furtive, stolen moments, wearing facades to protect the innocent. Adam as man with a mission.
What a smooth, cohesive narrative from beginning to end for these twelve songs of disparate origins, the silken wrap of Adam’s voice draws them together . Adam’s description of light and dark sides is too simple and stark for this album. It’s more prismatic, reflecting a multitude of colours and hues. Listening to the album from beginning to end, I find I appreciate each one more within the context of the complete set. I wonder where the three bonus tracks will take us after Outlaws of Love? Shall we invite a Jungian analyst to cast an analytical eye to the lyrics?
Frankly right now I don’t care who wrote what with whom, or who produced what – Adam owns every single song on this album. Not a single false word or note to my willing ear. He said that’s what he set out to do- reveal himself, invite us in, share some facts and feelings from his life, both past and present. He moves us in ways he hasn’t before, more profoundly, more intimately.
From sexy, funny, uninhibited party boy to introspective, deeply emotional man, to advocate and nearly every other aspect of Adam is contained in one place. With years before his magnificent voice even reaches its maturity, this seems the right time and place, the stars seem aligned and as Apollo smiles down from his golden chariot we all bask in the sunshine Adam brings to us with his music, wit, generous spirit and beauty in body and soul.
This is not one, unrelievedly maudlin theme like Adele’s 21 – the needy friend who can’t stop talking about her personal misery until you want to slam the phone down on her. Adam is a fully engaged, adult being with a life of varied experiences. He’s had the heartbreaks, the disappointments, the frustrations but he’s absorbed them into his psyche to share his stories with us within a context, from a bit of distance. This is why listening to an artist with a range of life experience, knowledge and worldliness is so much more satisfying. Each song works on more than one level and fits into the musical/thematic continuum of the Trespassing album as a whole.
For those who complain that we can’t “hear” Adam’s miraculous, heavenly voice – radio doesn’t seem to place any value on superior vocal abilities, so we’ll likely enjoy those songs directly from CD to our own ears or in personal or TV performances. The beat-driven party/club dance music will be played more universally, but Adam Lambert has a not-so-secret weapon for success. Why did Adam see such financial rewards in 2010? Not so much his music sales but his ticket sales. In a year when concerts were being cancelled, Adam was adding appearances to the GNT schedule – globally. Did he get major mainstream promotion? A solid, dedicated fan base and word-of-mouth through social media spread the word. No reason to think the Trespassing tour will be any less successful working with this solid collection of songs, it should be even better!
His live vocal and performance abilities lay waste to those who might get the air play but can’t sell-out live shows. Why did Queen come calling on Adam? Not to record their music but to perform it with them!
Perhaps the singles could have been released in the order in which they appear on the album to reveal the story chronologically – too logical?
Still don’t know how I’m going to survive to May 15th. The buds on the tree outside my window should be in full bloom by then and I will discover what type it is!
Join us to chat about Adam’s new album!
9:00 to 10:00 pm eastern
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Log in to Juneau & Xena’s Salon to listen in or join the chat room
call-in (917) 932-1825