by Robert Perales, A&E Editor
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Haley Reinhart does more than enough to prove herself as an up-and-coming jazz/soul singer on her debut album, “Listen Up.” The debut record follows her third place finish on the 10th season of American Idol.
The 10 track album features sultry riffs and poetic verses that combine to establish an incredible debut from Reinhart. The opening track and rumored second single, “Oh My!,” features rapper B.O.B. and is the most radio friendly track on the album. It contains influences of pop, hip-hop and jazz.
Other standout tracks include “Wonderland,” “Hit the Ground Runnin’,” “Now That You’re Here,” “Free” and “Undone.”
“Undone” displays Reinhart at her most fragile state and is the only mid-tempo song on the album. Reinhart sings about the hardships of dealing with a relationship that has “gone wrong” and the regret shared with the heartache.
As it was co-written by Reinhart herself, the listener is able to feel the emotion not only in the delivery, but ultimately in the lyrics. The standout track has received critical acclaim from fans and critics alike.
In the deluxe version of the album, which features four additional tracks, Reinhart is at her best. With tracks like “Let’s Run Away” and “Spider Web,” it is clear that Reinhart experimented with several different sounds, which is common for a debut album.
“Let’s Run Away” sounds like a summer anthem as it features a Reggae and pop influences. Rather than singing about a torn relationship, the lyrics focus on the happiness of dealing with found love.
“Spider Web” is the the 12th track on the album and abandons Reinhart’s jazz soul to establish more of a pop-rock sound. The track has been deemed as a fan favorite and is among one of the highest selling songs on the album.
Reinhart had a large hand in the production of “Listen Up” and also included her father, Harry Reinhart, on four tracks of the album. All the more impressive, Haley Reinhart had a hand in writing all but one track on the album, “Free.”
“Listen Up” is a must buy for all Reinhart fans as it will be the first of the many CD’s from her collection.
According to Soundscan, which is the official method of tracking sales of music and music video products throughout the United States and Canada, “Listen Up” will sell a projected 15,000 to 20,000 copies in its debut week with a start at around the top 20 of the Billboard 200.
A top 20 debut with “Listen Up” will make Haley Reinhart another successful artist found by the hit TV show, American Idol, but it will ultimately deem Haley Reinhart as a successful jazz/soul singer.
Reinhart will perform alongside Florence + the Machine and the Red Hot Chili Peppers at Chicago’s annual Lollapalooza festival in the upcming summer, where she will perform several of the tracks from “Listen Up.”