“New Year, New You! (Or Something)”
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Well, we’ve all made it another year. And with another New Year, comes more unfulfilled New Year’s resolutions! The seemingly ceaseless cascade of “New Year, New Me!” posts on various social media sites are finally starting to wane with the collapse of the masses’ resolve.
To contrast this epidemic of unfulfilled promises, I present a collection of music where the artists actually did move forward and change. While this is sacrilege to the fans who turn their backs on the artists they once loved, saying “you’ve changed” with a solitary tear rolling down their cheek, I am of the opinion that artists are meant to grow and evolve.
One of the more subtle changes that we’ve had is the artist that everyone loves to hate, Justin Bieber. Say what you will about his character, but the kid can sing and has been able to for quite some time (as unfortunate as that may be). His latest album Purpose, released just last year, has had even some of the most devote anti-Beliebers begrudgingly cranking the volume on the radio whenever “Sorry” comes on. With this album, I would say that Bieber has been moving more towards the R&B side of the Pop music spectrum, which is definitely a welcome change from his teenage hits of yesteryear, à la “Baby.”
Probably the most polarizing change from this past year would be that of Mumford & Sons. On their latest album, the group decided to ditch their tried and true banjo and acoustic guitar combination for a more modern arrangement of electric instruments.
While I am still of the opinion that Mumford & Sons’ old pseudo-folk style definitely brought a resurgence, of sorts, to the folk world, giving it a little more of a share of the spotlight, but that doesn’t mean that their new album isn’t good. In fact, I commend them for making such a drastic change to their sound, despite the fact that they knew they would most certainly lose a fair portion of their fans. It’s their art after all, not their fans.
Actually, I find it all the more interesting when looking at an artist’s entire catalogue as one larger piece of art and seeing the different incarnations of the artist inside of it, as opposed to a bunch of songs that all sound the same.