Whether it’s obvious or subtle, heartbreak is often the inspiration for a musician’s material. But for Nick Jonas, instead of dragging fans down with a bunch of sad songs on his latest album, ‘Last Year Was Complicated,’ he did the complete opposite — by using his broken heart to create some serious jams!
Ever since Nick Jonas went on a late-night Twitter rant revealing just about every detail of his new album, Last Year Was Complicated, the 23-year-old singer has had fans eagerly waiting to hear his breakup-inspired record. Not disappointing with the first four songs he released, Nick put together quite the collection of songs that everyone will be able to jam to, even if they’re not heartbroken too. Keep reading our review to find out more!
Those who have had “Close,” “Champagne Problems,” and “Bacon” on repeat since they were dropped will be pleased with the rest of the album, as 90 percent of the 12-song track list consists of catchy hooks or head-bopping beats similar to that of his 2014 smash “Jealous.” Although this record is evidently a result of his split from Olivia Culpo, Nick stuck to a bouncier sound that almost makes listeners forget heartbreak is the album’s main influencer. From falsetto-laced jams like”Voodoo” and “Don’t Make Me Choose” to a few flirty and playful tunes (“The Difference” and “Good Girls”), Nick delivered several tracks that could easily find their way to the radio the way his initial releases did.
Even with the heavy pop/R&B influence, there are still a few gems that provide a little variety. The acoustic guitar-based, sexed-up “Touch” — one of the best tracks on the album — allows Nick to flaunt his smooth vocals without any overpowering beats, and “Under You” channels a disco-infused R&B sound. And as Tove Lo‘s sultry role on “Close” hinted, the features on LYWC were well executed too, including a genius sampling of Alan Iverson‘s infamous “Practice” speech in the multi-tempoed “Comfortable.”
Ironically, Nick’s only true fault on the entire record comes with the best track on the album. The lyrics on the rest of the record may tell of his heartbreak, but “Unhinged” is where we really see the vulnerable lyrics come into play — and ultimately understand why this album is titled what it is. As great as the fun, dancey songs are, “Unhinged” makes fans want more of the vulnerable, softer Nick (especially since a breakup fueled the album), and there’s not much of that LYWC. “Chainsaw” is about the closest thing to “Unhinged,” but even that ballad has some major beat drops!
That’s not to say that Nick didn’t make a solid record, though. While a lot of the album does sound fairly similar with their bumping beats and falsetto showcases, Nick has clearly found a sound that works for him and he’s totally owning it. Last year may have been complicated for Nick, but there was at least one great thing to come of it!
What do you think of Last Year Was Complicated, HollywoodLifers? What’s your favorite song? Tell us below!