When Camila Cabello left Fifth Harmony and quickly started her solo career, the pop world was shook. It wasn't a case where it was an artist making a fatal career decision in the spur of the moment, though, as Cabello proved that her presence in the pop world was more than just being part of a girl group. With her home in her heart and experiences to retell, Camila Cabello bares her roots into her music in her debut Camila.
The most refreshing aspect of Camila is its Latin flair. Latin elements in pop are by no means something new; artists like Shakira have been bringing it into pop music successfully for a long time. Cabello's integration of these elements is fluid and natural, though, finding the perfect balance between the traditional pop structure and her own personal flair, never treading too much onto one side when both elements are present. It's first noticeable in 'She Loves Control,' the albums first track with more drive. It's ambitious, and the latin vibes add to her low-key style she's going for. 'Inside Out' also sticks to her Latin roots, and it complements the more upbeat sound well. And, of course, there is her huge single 'Havana' that, with its Cuban soul and sweet, dark melodies, does its job as one of pop's biggest songs right now, and Young Thug certainly doesn't detract from it. The song, while it does feel a bit inconsequential at its end, is very much a strong pop song through and through.
The problem Camila has from going above and beyond is that it seems to restrict itself in places where it really needs to go a step further. It is very evident in songs like opening single 'Never Be The Same' that all the elements required for a great song are there, but it doesn't have that lasting impact or big finale that could make it go above and beyond. That holds true for most of the rest of the record, as well. Slower songs like the heartbreaking, bittersweet 'Consequences' are perfect in the way that they're restrained, but when the giant, bassy synths of 'Something's Gotta Give' don't explode at the end of the song or the chill vibes of 'Real Friends' don't resolve themselves, there's just a bit of emptiness that prevents the album from being a real banger.
Camila Cabello bares her roots into her music in her debut Camila and it is definitely certain that she is a force to be reckoned with in the world of pop. With a great blend of her heritage and traditional pop themes and the ability to make catchy and dark melodies, it is no doubt that she will go far. All she has to do is really sell the tracks and make them hit harder so they leave more of an impact, and then there may be no one that can stop her.
Favorite Tracks: Consequences, She Loves Control
Least Favorite Track: Into It
Rating: 76 / 100
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