Adam Lambert – Believe

“Who’d dare to cover Believe?”

Tom: Every time we talk about a song with a name like this, the same as an absolutely iconic track, I get a bit grumpy. Why would you release a song with the same name like that? Unless it’s actually a cover. And who’d dare to cover Believe?

Tom: Oh. He would. And really well.

Tim: Well, yeah, kind of. I mean, it’s hardly the honest to God banger that the original was, is it?

Tom: Okay, a bit of backstory: he performed this live at the Kennedy Center Honours a year ago, and brought Cher to tears. She later posted a tweet in her usual style about it.

Tim: Amazing.

Tom: Here’s what I reckon: Cher’s original is a better studio version.

Tim: Obviously.

Tom: This isn’t a Johnny Cash situation, where the new cover version is now the definitive version of the song. (Twice.) And honestly, I don’t think this needs to be a studio single: I think that live performance stands well on its own.

Tim: Okay, we’ll come back to that Johnny Cash claim in a bit, because…yeah, later. As for this, sure, that’s a good performance, if you like that sort of thing. I think I’m just too pro-banger to really get this. Just leaves me a bit ehh.

Tom: That said, without the single, I wouldn’t have heard the live version.

Adam Lambert – Superpower

“The victim of a couple of poor decisions.”

Tom: Time for the most disappointing chorus we’ve heard in a while!

Tim: Oh.

Tom: Now, maybe you’ll feel different if I’ve lowered your expectations, but after that cracking pre-chorus with its driving backing and careless profanity, I was hoping for a chorus that was… well, a lot more. I know, he’s going for the 70s-inspired funk sound, but it’s just such a letdown for me.

Tim: Yeah, yeah, I get what you mean. Having said that, I often feel that way with this genre of music – it seems to be a built-in feature that the choruses never quite satisfy me. This is, well, not too different from most.

Tom: It is catchy! It is good! It does exactly what it sets out to do! The middle eight guitar solo is genuinely really good! It’s just, unfortunately, the victim of a couple of poor decisions.

Adam Lambert – Another Lonely Night

“That’s the best new song I’ve heard this month.”

Tim: Somehow, despite seemingly being around for ever, Adam Lambert’s only on his third album; here’s the second cut from it, with strong language on occasion and, somehow, some more cows – are they in fashion right now?

Tom: Oh my word. That’s an incredible song. That’s the best new song I’ve heard this month.

Tim: Good, isn’t it? Message from the video: don’t be a stripper. Or, combined with the music, don’t be a stripper if you’ve just split up with someone and can’t let go. Alternatively you could form a troupe, Magic Mike style – that could be fun. But I digress.

Tom: It’s a heck of a video, that. Sometimes we get emotional videos like this and I complain they’re too trite, too over-the-top, but no: this gets its point across well, and highlights Adam Lambert as well. It helps that it’s a gorgeously shot slice of Americana too; that’ll always sell me on it.

Tim: Nice music too, and weird as they may be, the farm animals do provide a nice “pay attention, here comes the chorus” in case you’re not paying attention, because that chorus is quite something.

Tom: It’s an odd choice, that distorted “yeah” — I can see why it’s there, but I’m not convinced it’s a positive. But the chorus that follows is so good that I can’t really complain: and Adam Lambert’s got the voice to pull something like that off.

Tim: Certainly a departure from the verses, yet both are worth listening to (though I wouldn’t mind the piano in the verses hitting the volume of that in the middle eight), and all in all we’ve got a catchy tune that I’ve no problems listening to. Super.

Adam Lambert – Better Than I Know Myself

The fangirls will be happy.

Tim: Stand aside for the weird-concept video, please, which today contains an excessive amount of oxygen and lapels. And, as it happens, Adam Lamberts.

Tom: Plural? The fangirls will be happy.

Tim: First off, children, can we please not use this video as a substitute for a physics lesson. Or at the very least, not that oxygen meter thingy, which is wrong on just so many levels I can’t possibly ignore it, desperate as I am to do so. But let’s move on.

Tom: Second up, that is a spectacular hairstyle. I mean, I have to respect anyone who takes their cues from Sonic the Hedgehog.

Tim: I don’t know if that’s meant to be an insult, but if it is, it’s a bit rich coming from the man who takes his cues from Professor Snape.

Tom: Now that’s harsh. “Lank and greasy and flopping onto the table?”

…wait, you’re just going to do a cock joke now, aren’t you?

Tim: Actually, I was thinking we really, desperately, need to move on to the song.

What we have here is him singing to (one would presume) an unspecified boy/girlfriend, something along the lines of ‘I know I’m acting weird, but please don’t dump me because even though I may give the impression I want to leave you I don’t’.

Tom: Musically, I’m not all that impressed: having listened to it twice now, I still can’t remember it at all. Is there anything catchy in there? I’m really not sure.

Tim: Not hugely catchy, no, but the video gives an extra bit, which warrants discussion.

Unleashed last Friday, it adds to the lyrics nicely, with an idea of ‘the main reason you think I want to leave you is that the evil half of my mind is currently trying to murder the good half of my brain, so be perfectly honest I’m a little bit too busy to bother with all this relationship faff’.

Tom: Ah, the classic. Boy meets girl, girl likes boy, boy turns out to have two disparate warring personalities.

Tim: Such a classic tale.

The big debate here, of course, is: is he being too self-centred? Some would argue he is, but personally, I can see where he’s coming from, especially when Evil Adam pulls out his own heart and squelches it a bit.

Tom: And Evil Adam has significantly better makeup.

Tim: And significantly bigger lapels. Yes, it’s the second time I’ve mentioned them, but THEY’RE BLOODY MASSIVE.

An alternative interpretation, though, is that this song is a message from one Adam to the other, and what we have here is a remarkably open and public major psychological breakdown. That could be quite fun to watch, actually.

Tom: I think it’d be more fun than this song.