Quinton Smith is an artist from New Jersey who recently released Straight from the Heart. It’s an album that tackles two distinct styles with palatable melodies and easy to enjoy grooves. Smith mentions that he is a huge fan of albums that tell a story and that is exactly what he does on this album. So much so there's almost no ambiguity in the lyrics. It's like he is just talking in a normal conversation rather than delving into poetic language that could be interpreted in different ways.
Take for instance the opener “Name and Number” which tells the first person perspective of him basically seeing an attractive woman and trying to pick her up. He goes on to sing about how he is shy but that he is also going to do what he’s gotta do to be with her even if she is in a relationship. Overall, he seems to be sincere and sweet despite the odd juxtaposition of character and intention. The song is certainly catchy and fits into a singer/songwriter category.
“Lovin’ You” is arguably even catchier. Lyrically this song is straightforward and one the ladies as well as the men could enjoy. Don’t miss the guitar solo. “Reminiscin'” has a distinctly different vibe than the previous songs. Smith plays into a soulful, R&B vibe. In my opinion he sounds natural in this environment. His vocal delivery fits like a glove. He continues down that road with “Took My Smile” which is slightly more jazz influenced.
On “Devil in Disguise” he reverts to a funky/pop/rock vibe that was more apparent on the opening. “Self Worth” goes into lounge-y sensual R&B while the closer “Alright” hits upon a Jack Johnson singer/songwriter vibe.
Smith is an artist with copious amounts of talent. That being said he needs to pick a direction and stick with it. There were clearly two vibes on this album. One was the poppy, alternative singer/songwriter vibe while the other had a R&B, soulful vibe. One of the hardest things for any artist is to truly land on their sound and Smith sounds like he is close but not quite there yet. This maybe a case of working with a professional producer who can help sculpt a sound where they start defining more of a signature sound.
Smith has no lack of skill. In fact any one of these songs is highly enjoyable. I’m looking forward to his evolution. Keep an eye on him
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