It’s finally here, the international debut album we have been waiting for from Zara Larsson. The Swedish pop sensation has become a global obsession with many amazing international hits. Finally, all those singles have come together, separated by some awesome unheard tracks, on one album. “So Good” may be the title of the album, but it exactly describes our feelings towards it.
She originally released a debut album titled “1” which is only available in Scandinavia. It has charted on all three respective countries, Sweden, Denmark, and Norway; with it charting at number one in Zara Larsson’s home country. Now she has released her international debut album and we’re so grateful to finally have an album from her.
The opening track “What They Say” is a great introducing track for the album, it showcases her vocals perfectly, all the while giving us a great pop track that we can play on repeat and never get tired of. She’s soulful throughout and that’s what we needed from this track that lyrically speaks of believing in each other and not believing rumours that others are spreading. It’s an encouraging track and is perfect for anyone who needs someone to believe in them, because it sounds like Zara Larsson has always got our corner and she believes we can achieve our dreams.
This launches into her brilliantly catchy solo single “Lush Life”. Which is closely followed next by two other singles “I Would Like” and “So Good”, the latter of which features Ty Dolla $ign. All three singles bring familiarity to this album, showcasing Zara Larsson’s diverse sound. “Lush Life” will always be the club-pop song we want on the dancefloor. “I Would Like” will always be a grower of a song, one of those you’re singing along to without even realising; one of those that stays in your head all day long. “So Good” will always be the pop-ballad that never achieved major chart success like her other songs, yet will still resonate deeply within us because she proves herself on the track. Ty Dolla $ign, once again, adds very little to the track, much like he did in Nick Jonas’ album “Last Year Was Complicated”, and adds hardly anything to the album as a whole. Thing is, his segment is too similar to the song itself, so he hardly stands out, unfortunately.
Next up is “TG4M” and “Only You”. The former is an acronym for “Too Good 4 Me”. It is an emotional pop song that works nicely after “So Good”. It doesn’t showcase her vocals all that well, but what Zara Larsson lacks in ability, she definitely makes up in adding feeling into the song. It’s gentle and peaceful all the while being infectiously beaty. As for “Only You”, it’s a total upgrade from the past two songs. Her voice is magnificent on this track, full of so much soul and honesty. Although, there are plenty of tongue-in-cheek lyrics which also makes this song quite the tease, so much so we love it.
Then comes in two collaborations, the one that made her internationally famous with gay icon MNEK titled “Never Forget You”, and one unheard track with WizKid titled “Sundown”. We have to congratulate MNEK on gifting the world this talented singer. If he hadn’t have worked with her she probably would not be the pop sensation she is right now, and it’s all down to the awesome hit “Never Forget You” which has been slotted in the middle of this album perfectly, exactly where it needed to be. MNEK brings a male-vocal at the crucial moment we needed one, switching this album right up. He deserves hit after hit after hit, and we sure hope he continues with his amazing success. As for “Sundown”, it’s introduced, from the get-go, by WizKid making this song a total stand-out track on the album, one you need to listen to. This is a whole new club song that Zara Larsson needs to release as a final single, we can imagine fired-up remixes launching on dancefloors around the world. Her vocals are impressive throughout this song, and it’s bound to be a future hit.
“Don’t Let Me Be Yours” follows on next, which is a relaxer of a song that touches deeply within. It’s a grower that you’ll be singing along to in no time. Then “Make That Money Girl” kicks in which is probably the forgettable song on the album, and yet Zara Larsson packs a punch and proves she can do R&B when she needs to. It may not work that great, and will never be a hit, but it’s catchy and continues to prove Zara Larsson’s versatility. Then “Ain’t My Fault” jumps in, prepared to bring back any straying listeners – we’re still right here with you Zara Larsson, loving your sound throughout. This single underperformed compared to her previous singles and yet it’s one that showed a new side to Zara Larsson that brought more success her way.
Three remaining solo songs to finish the album off, apart from the special ending collaboration track. “One Mississippi” showcases her falsetto with clever lyrics that we’ll be reading up on later so that we can sing-along next time it’s played. Then comes “Funeral”, which is flooded with passion, but the chorus just doesn’t go anywhere, leaving the verses much more exciting as they are much more upbeat. And then an exposing soulful track comes along. Stripped back, “I Can’t Fall In Love Without You” will enter your heart and break it apart. Zara Larsson, backed with a piano, during the first half of this song, nails every note vocally possible. If you ever need a song to prove to people that she can really sing, send them this song. It later develops, during the second half, giving us something more, and even though it wasn’t needed, it fully makes this track the best ballad on the album, maybe even the best song on the album overall. What an ending!
Well, until “Symphony” kicks in and Clean Bandit decides to show that the album is not quite over. This song has clearly just been added to the end of the album, and it’s totally out of place. Regardless, it shows Zara Larsson’s beautiful vocals off effortlessly, all the while proving the force of Clean Bandit and their amazing instrumental ability. It isn’t either artists’ best track, and is definitely a grower of a song, but it does have touching heart-warming lyrics, and a brilliant accompanying music video too.
As a whole, this album has been a long-time coming; and it is a great international debut album for Zara Larsson that clearly showcases her versatile voice. We’re completely grateful that we now have a full album from her; yet, some of the songs don’t quite meet our high expectations. Regardless, Zara Larsson has given it her all, and this album is something she should be very proud of because it’s one we’re proud to be able to listen to.
Thank you, Zara Larsson, for this incredible gift, and we so hope you decide to release “Sundown” as a single as everyone needs this song played on a dancefloor in a club at some point in their lives.
“So Good” the album, is available to download and stream right now.
Zara Larsson is a Swedish pop sensation, who first came to prominence when she won Talang, the Swedish version of Got Talent, at just 10 years old. She went on to release a number of singles and EPs, as well as a debut album – that we previously mentioned. She later collaborated with MNEK on the track “Never Forget You”, that totally launched her internationally. Riding on this success, her song “Lush Life” was released globally and soon became a worldwide hit, then follow-up singles dominated around the world, too. She has also collaborated with Tinie Tempah and David Guetta on “Girls Like” and “This One’s For You”, respectively. The latter collaboration, of which, was the official song of UEFA Euro 2016. All this happened before she finally got around to releasing her international debut album.