For Your Entertainment | Adam Lambert
As his recent performance on the AMAs proves, Adam Lambert is not one to walk in quietly. He made a splash onto the music scene when he ended up as this year’s “American Idol” runner-up. Adam rose to the top of the competition week after week, not only for his fabulous voice that could hit the highest notes but also for his androgynous look and showy performances. His debut CD, “For Your Entertainment,” dropped last Tuesday, and it is quite the album.
Last spring, I unofficially knew “Idol” performance night as WTF-Tuesdays, because every week, Adam gave an even less predictable performance than he did the week before. This album gives off a similar vibe. Songs range from the synthesizing pop-dance beats of the opening song “Music Again” to the tantalizingly drawn out ballad “Broken Down.” Both songs, like most of the album, showcase Adam’s ridiculously large range that brought him to the top of the pack this season.
Because he can sing just about anything, Adam has been called a vocal chameleon. This is both a positive and a negative on this album. Writing credits on “For Your Entertainment” feature many famous musicians, and it shows. “Soaked,” written by Muse’s Matthew Bellamy, has a Mediterranean vibe that Adam sings wonderfully, but it sounds exactly like a Muse song. And, I’m surprised every time I listen to “Whatya Want From Me” when Adam starts singing. Written by Pink, this unofficial second single sounds exactly like something she would record. Not that I’m complaining. These two tracks are two of my favorites on the record, focusing on a softer side of Adam’s vocals and revealing his own sensitive side.
The title track, “For Your Entertainment,” is a different story. This is a song I would hear in any dance club. The first time I heard it, I stopped in the middle of the song. Adam’s voice sounded processed, like nothing like I’d expect from someone with such beautiful vocals. The slightly sadistic lyrics (“do you know what you got into/ Can you handle what I’m ‘bout to do/ Cuz it’s about to get rough for you/ I’m here for your entertainment”) certainly didn’t help. But then on second and third (and ninth and 10th…) listen, I started to love the song. It has a great beat, and it is perfect for dancing. After half a year of being confined into the “American Idol mold,” Adam is getting to express himself here. And it’s just fun.
Many other songs also highlight Adam’s raw sexual power. “Strut” and “Fever” are two examples. Both feature gender-neutral pronouns like “you,” allowing Adam to ambiguously express his true nature. And they both encourage the listener to get rid of all their inhibitions like Adam did, and, as the producer of “Fever,” Lady Gaga, once pronounced—to just dance. Songs like “If I Got You” and “Sure Fire Winners” give Adam even more opportunity to proclaim who he is and show the world that he honestly doesn’t care what people think of him. And they are just so fun to listen to.
All in all, “For Your Entertainment” is an extremely fun album. It gives Adam slightly less opportunity to showcase his raw vocal power than I was expecting, but I haven’t heard an album in a really long time that made me just want to get up and go crazy as much as this one does—that is, go crazy in a good way.
For fans of: Lady Gaga, David Bowie
Songs to download: ‘Whatya Want From Me’, ‘For Your Entertainment’, ‘Soaked’