Tough Love | Jessie Ware

It's been a while since I did a music related post, so here's a review for an album that I've really been enjoying recently. I've no doubt you're already aware of this album due to the overwhelming radio coverage the lead single has had in recent weeks, it's Jessie Ware's sophomore album, Tough Love.

What can I say about Jessie Ware... Voice of an actual angel? Effortlessly cool? Down to earth? The list could go on. I amazingly managed to get tickets to see her perform at the iTunes festival in September and although I'd known of her music and listen to occasionally for a couple of years, I have to say I wasn't a huge fan. I liked her first album Devotion for sure, but I just never really took the time to properly listen.

But when she started singing at that gig, it was like a huge smack-in-the-face type of musical awakening. She is awesome. She sang flawlessly and gave a bit of banter whilst she was up on stage - what a lady. So I knew I had to get the new album after hearing it being performed so beautifully that evening.

There's a theme running throughout the album, you can guess by the title, it's love. First off, a lot of the lyrics on the album, in fact all of the lyrics are very love-centric and almost at times, a bit gushy. Now I enjoy a love song as much as the next person but at times throughout the album for me it gets a little too much. But that's not to detract, in any way, from the beauty of Jessie's words - much like another female artist's sophomore album *cough Back To Black - Amy Winehouse cough* Jessie is laying herself out completely through this album, granted the comparison can't be taken too seriously as the context of each album's subject is different in so many ways. 

But I like the grit and the honesty, I personally think it shows a maturity and development of an artist.

Tough Love's sound is a lot more soulful than Jessie's first album - this could be due to the strong and powerful vocals displayed on the tracks, and that's certainly not a bad thing, but I still feel like the album portrays her signature 'ambient but upbeat and still a bit alternative' sound - in a round about way. In reality, this album leans a lot closer towards the mainstream sound than Devotion, but if by that you understand it to be just another 'middle-of-the-road' type album that we'll all forget in a couple of months - you'd be mistaken.

My standout tracks from the album are You & I (Forever), Kind Of...Sometimes...Maybe, and the lead single track Say You Love Me, but all of the tracks are beautiful in their own right. I have to also mention there are some gems on the deluxe version of the album - which I was unaware of until my friend enlightened me, I'm very glad she did.

I'd thoroughly recommend a listen of this album, it's easy listening in all the right ways with some power behind it - you won't be disappointed.