Review by Shannon Shumaker
“Bare feet, swaying to a laid back beat, she just wanna be free,” is quite possibly the perfect line to encompass Cody Simpson’s new album, Free. The first song (and also the album’s title track) opens the album with a warm, laid back beat (just like the lyrics imply) and when Cody Simpson’s smooth and soothing vocals come in, it really is hard not to sway along to it. “Free” is the perfect introduction to Cody Simpson for new listeners, as it’s warm and easygoing, perfect for spending a day on the beach, and the following thirteen songs only explore that sound even more.
Just the guitar work in “Driftwood,” the second song on the album, is enough to lighten your mood. Starting off rather mellow and laid back with soft vocals and finger picking, Simpson croons about floating by like a piece of driftwood, but the song quickly grows into something more than just simple guitar work when the drums come in. Then, a little over halfway through the song, some strong electric guitar work comes in, adding just another mood to the song and making that much stronger.
The mellow, laid back mood of Free serves as both a strength and weakness. While the album is incredibly easy to listen to, it flows so well that it’s easy to get lost in the songs, and before you realize it, three more tracks have gone by. This album doesn’t necessarily demand to be heard, nor does it require your full attention for you to enjoy it. Instead, Free is the perfect summer soundtrack for road trips, days at the beach or even lazy afternoons at home. Before you even know it, you’re five songs deep into this album and it feels like no time has passed at all.
Standout tracks, however, include “I’m Your Friend,” with a super happy-go-lucky feel and heartfelt, touching lyrics, as well as “Wilderness,” which is a nice step away from the other tracks on Free, swapping soft, easygoing vibes for a more raw and simple sound, and the result is beautiful.
Rounding out the album strong is “Palm Of Your Hand,” a rather simple and uplifting track, followed by a fuller, almost rock sounding song, “Love Yourself.” “Happy Lil Hippy” is upbeat and catchy, and “Still Smilin’” takes things right back to where they started with an easygoing laid back tune.
Falling in love with Cody Simpson’s new album Free is easy when it’s delivered with smooth vocals, warm instrumentals, and catchy, summery melodies. While some of the album may seem to go by almost in the blink of an eye because of how well it flows, it makes for an incredibly easy listen and the perfect summer album.
You can Purchase "Free" on iTunes
Listen to "Driftwood" or "Free"