Adam Lambert’s ‘The Original High’ Album: Review Revue

Bianca Gracie | June 16, 2015 7:50 am
Adam Lambert Performs "Ghost Town" On ‘Fallon’: Watch
The singer rocked the late night crowd with his catchy single.

Since his American Idol days and with the debut For Your Entertainment albumAdam Lambert has portrayed himself as a slightly over-the-top glam rock star complete with heavy eye liner and a bold attitude. But for this third LP The Original High (out today, June 16), the pop star softens his edge and returns with a more mature — yet still fierce — musical confidence.

In our review, we stated: “For the most part, he’s stripped away the theatrics that marked For Your Entertainment and Trespassing. (Just compare the album covers!) Lest Glamberts fear that their emperor has sworn off his edgy-in-eyeliner aesthetic, however, breathe easy, children! If anything, his sound has gotten weirder, which is a wonderful thing.”

But how do other music industry critics feel about Adam Lambert’s new album? Read what they had to say down below!

:: The New York Times says Lambert “tones down the excess”: “Here, Mr. Lambert has fully committed to formula: 10 out of these 11 songs are under four minutes. While there are a few missteps — Mr. Lambert doesn’t have the R&B sultriness required for ‘Underground,’ and ‘Rumors’ bizarrely cribs the jaunty synth pattern from Lil Wayne’s ‘Lollipop’ — there are almost no extravagances. After years of spectacle, Mr. Lambert may have been saved by modesty.”

:: Digital Spy stated: “‘I’m a grown-ass man/ And I don’t understand/ Why I should be living in the shadows,’ he attests on the airy chorus, confronting the issue with a supercharged passion that can only burst from an underdog tired of fighting for respect. It’s a battle Adam has won many times over since his Idol defeat, and luckily here – despite its handful of pitfalls – The Original High is a bold and tenacious modern pop record that he can call another victory.”

:: All Music gave the album 4 stars: “Although the album can linger on moody noir a little too long — the lightest material is squired away on the three bonus tracks, each an effervescent delight — the individual components work on their own merits, whether it’s the steely clatter of the Tove Lo duet ‘Rumours,’ the elegantly skeletal cinemascapes of ‘Ghost Town,’ or the cleanly constructed lines of ‘Things I Didn’t Say.’ Here, and throughout The Original High, Adam Lambert demonstrates he’s in perfect control of his style and sound and knows how to combine both into a sterling modern pop record.”

:: While The Guardian was not so lenient: “On this third studio album, he’s ditched his former label’s plans for a collection of 1980s cover songs in favour of a bouncy journey through a few of the current pop-house revival’s most predictable motifs.”

:: The Boston Globe had this to say: “Club-ready tracks like ‘Things I Didn’t Say’ and ‘The Light’ pair his moodier outlook with pulsing beats. And Queen guitarist Brian May shows up for a juicy solo on the grinding bad-girl tale ‘Lucy.’ It’s an appealing snapshot of how Lambert has grown, and how he’s still willing to surprise his listeners and himself.”

:: Lastly, The New York Daily News wrapped up with this: “The new songs continue to mine the dance-oriented, ’80s hues of his earlier albums, though with a bit more softness around the edges. Lambert’s album has its own Queen connection by featuring a cameo from Brian May. If the end result isn’t as big a blast as the star’s previous records, it still has his likable tone and witty character to count on. When Lambert does veer into the ridiculous, he knows it, using bad taste to his advantage.”

Did you enjoy Adam Lambert’s The Original High? Sound off in the comments below!

Get an eyeful of even more pop music coverage, from artist interviews to exclusive performances, on Idolator’s YouTube channel.