Shamir - 'Hope'

7/10

It seems that this very sudden release from Shamir is intended to be weighted with a lot of baggage. After releasing this new album for free earlier this week, the frontman included a very passionate and heartfelt explanation for his motives, which basically boiled down to his disenfranchisement of the music industry itself. As a result, the record lacks that super-slicked, over-polished sound we are used to from so many, and instead opts for a raw intention that helps bring out Shamir's true writing style.

Unlike his debut album 'Ratchet', which aimed to pitch him as a high-energy popstar, 'Hope' sticks to a more heartfelt direction. Less of the big basslines and electronic beats, and more simple instrumentation with Shamir crooning and/or wailing his way through the works. It may be a vast contrast between this and what we are used to, but manages to maintain a lot of his original magic, as it plays with the same passion and integrity as his debut release.

Fans expecting a like-for-like follow up of 'Ratchet' will obviously be disappointed, but as its own record, 'Hope' looks to break down the conventions of what we expect from a second release and instead gives us a real insight into the true goings-on inside the life of a musician riding the peripheries of fame.

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