In working with very limited techniques and boundaries that seem to harmfully permeate the pop music market, Cabello wasn’t too shabby and produced some surprisingly likeable moments. Her melodies were rightfully in the forefront and always gave each song identity. After the first song “Never Be the Same” failed to deliver any real gravity or strength in melodic motives, the album seemed to grow in imagination a bit more and songs had at least one interesting recurring line. This happened mostly when Cabello implemented both syncopation and broader shape to her sung lines, as in the song “Havana”. Those little chorus moments of melodic individuality were well done to a degree and the most compelling moments in the album. They were far from being consistent, though, and they couldn’t necessarily hold up an entire song and make the music worthy on their own. Still, within this small, tightly wound world of cheap modern pop, the melodies were slightly enjoyable. Comparative to the music that actually captivates, though, this was far from imaginative and stumbled through lots of obvious hurdles that a passionate musician should always work around. There were too many lame melodic repetitions involving repeated notes and boring skips that lead nowhere. The synthetic timbre was never invigorating, sounding quite meager and flimsy when trying to ignite a groove or seem danceable, as in “She Loves Control” and “In the Dark”. The reliance on the piano in middle of album was both surprising and refreshing. The two strongest songs on the album, “Inside Out” and “Consequences”, had a rather pleasing sound dominated by the piano and gave room for textural development. They were also the only two songs that didn’t have a boring, under-developed harmonic progression, to which I believe the piano reliance helped with. Harmony was the main downfall of these songs, with most of the music falling in a rut dictated by uninspiring four chord loops. That was to be expected, though, as working within these basic market-friendly techniques always hampers creativity when creating a structure. It became clear that not enough musical thought went into this work to make it worthy, but perhaps Cabello’s personal melodic tendencies give a glimpse into what she could really accomplish. She can’t hide behind her producers and marketing team as much as this to really have this work taken seriously, but it could have been much worse. Again, this wasn’t too bad for something so obviously caught up in being plain and marketable.

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