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Neon Reviews: David Archuleta – The Other Side Of Down

David Archuleta - The Other Side Of Down

The sophomore album. It’s a peculiar thing. Sometimes it forces an artist to become so desperate for relevancy that they practically turn into someone they’re not. For a more self-assured artist like singer/songwriter and former American Idol contestant David Archuleta, it sees him only mildly tweaking the sound that’s gained him a solid and loyal following.

On his sophomore disc, The Other Side Of Down, David does a good job at evolving from his self-titled debut album just enough to pick up new fans without alienating his core fanbase.

He plays around with a more contemporary sound on songs like the set’s lead single Something ‘Bout Love and the bouncy album cut Look Around with its infectious and fun “oh, oh, oh” hook.

The singer does a little experimenting with his vocal delivery as well. In the metaphor-laden Elevator, Archie sings in a much higher voice on the chorus than fans are used to. This could prove disastrous for a lesser singer but for someone as vocally gifted as Archuleta, it works.

Ballads continue to be a draw for the young singer. “When you forget me/When you don’t remember my name/Not even a memory/Somewhere in the back of your brain,” David sings in a tender voice on the opening of Falling Stars, a heartbreaking tune about the end of a relationship. “I won’t be offended/‘Cause I always knew that the day would come when I’m not enough to make you stay/You tell me it’s not possible, no way that we could break/But nothing is illogical, believe me,” he continues before launching into the chorus. Another stand out, the lusciously sweet album closer My Kind Of Perfect, finds David searching for his perfect match assisted by a twinkling piano.

He’s a little older and a little more willing to play with sounds and vocal arrangements but he knows who he is. David Archuleta has seemingly found his kind of perfect in this tough industry and it’s reflected in this stellar second project.

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Comments

  1. great review!! =) I completely agree with the part of Elevator .. he shows his amazing vocals! like with Falling Stars <3 I love The Other Side Of Down = masterpiece :)

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  2. Couldn’t agree more, thanks for the thoughtful, well-written review! This album is a standout for me, especially the songs you mentioned as well as Stomping the Roses and the title track, although I find new faves every time I listen. Thanks again!

  3. Thank you for the great review of TOSOD. I love this cd and find it to be much more mature than the first. There are some very thought provoking lyrics behind the unmatchable vocals and much improved production of the songs (the production is supportive of David’s vocals, not overdone, allowing us to hear his perfection and passion). Falling Stars is my favorite but every song is fantastic. I love the bonus track Day After Tomorrow and the recently released Nothing Else Better To Do from the Japan cd, as well. In fact, I would love to hear EVERY song that David recorded!!

  4. I love this album and have many favorites. Last night in Singapore he did a heart-wrenching live version of “My Kind of Perfect.” Thank you for a fair and honest review.

  5. I love David’s latest sophomore album. I think it showcases David’s voice beautifully. The album seems so David and I can definitely see growth in David’s vocals and just how much of himself he has put into this album.

  6. I really love this album is one of my favorites. He really grows musically. He is one of the few singers that really can sing.

  7. Thanks for a nice review! I love David’s new album. I am so proud of this album. I can’t wait to see him on tour again and listen to him sing these songs LIVE. He’s so great at that!

  8. I’m enjoying David’s sophomore album alot! Every song has something to savor. Whether lyrically, vocally, or musically David Archuleta is a genius! I am so very happy for him and will forever be a supporter of this classy young man.
    Thanks for a spot-on review. This album is all full of WIN!

  9. Awesome review of an awesome album!!!!

    David’s lyrics, melodies, and voice have me listening on repeat day after day!

  10. David’s second album is awesome! I love that the music is clean and that I can relate to it in my own life.

  11. I love David’s new album so much! The thing that is amazing to me is that he co-wrote 10 of the 12 songs. Each song has special meaning and everytime I listen to the cd I like it more. “Falling Stars” and “Complain” were written by Emanuel Kiriakou and are also fantastic. “Falling Stars” is so beautiful, yeah! and love the guitar in “Complain”. David doesn’t need to sexualize the lyrics in his songs to put out a wonderful album like other artists do now days. His music is beautiful, clean and fresh!! Love him!!

  12. Thanks for a great review of David’s new album. I love ‘The Other Side Of Down’ and that is exactly how David’s music on this album makes me feel. I am so impressed with David and his music and writing skills. This is one terrific album, it really is my ‘feel good’ music. Love to listen to David sing, anytime, anyway, anywhere! I think David did a fantastic job on his sophomore album, bravo David.

  13. Thank you for a great review. I agree with everything you say! At only nineteen, David Archuleta is a formidable talent and a force to be reckoned with. I love that he has stayed true to himself and crafted an album of great songs, displaying awesome vocal prowess in the process.

  14. My feel good, keep my head up album, and the vocals are amazing as always.

  15. I love all of his albums. He shows us that he is growing as a singer and as a person. He doesn’t release something crappy, but something that has a meaning. Those who will buy and enjoy his albums are those who know him and really love him. I wish more people will buy his albums and listen to his songs not just once but more than once. I’m sure they will love them more and love and admire David as the way “we” his loyal fans do. I wish him all the good luck, happiness and health, so we will be able to enjoy his talent and voice for the longest time.

  16. David’s music is a joke. Total pop nonsense.

    But hey, I guess these comments demonstrate he’s a good businessman!

    • You’re entitled to your opinion, Jimmy, but reviews for The Other Side of Down have been overwhelmingly positive. I rather doubt you’ve listened to the album yourself, judging by your dismissive comment, but I challenge you to give it a try. If you do it with an open mind –meaning not being predisposed to hate it because of the genre and/or because it comes from an American Idol alum — you might be pleasantly surprised. If you’re honest, you’ll at least be able to admit he can sing very well. You might even find it to be “shockingly good” like Dan Aquilante of the New York Post, who admits up front he was totally prepared to hate it.

  17. Amy (in VA) says:

    Thanks for a great review! One of the most wonderful things about being a David Archuleta fan is that we will never be disappointed because David will never sell out. David will always be who he is as a musician, and as a person. This cd is my most favorite album EVER! (and I’m old haha) It is such a feel-good album and I love the layered nuances David lays in the songs, both vocally, melodically and lyrically. Homerun!

  18. Amy (in VA) says:

    Oh, and one more thing, one of THE MOST IMPRESSIVE things about David is his ability to sing LIVE. If you haven’t ever heard him live or are not a fan, give it a go – you won’t be disappointed. David is one of the few singers who can pull off acoustic shows and can really connect with his audience.

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