Kris Allen - Kris Allen
Record Label: Jive
Release Date: November 13, 2009
When Kris Allen won American Idol earlier this year, over the always flamboyant Adam Lambert, it shocked America. The pretty-boy "John Mayer" type singer over the goth version of Freddy Mercury? How can that be? I, like so many other people, think Adam should have won the competition but in the end, they're both winners.
I think this year was Idol's best season. Finally some people who differentiate themselves from the annoying, unfortunately ever-growing population. I decided I would actually buy a few albums this time and I pre-ordered this album not really knowing what to expect.
Surprisingly enough, it's pretty damn good. Kris Allen co-wrote most of the songs, which I think is pretty cool.
The album starts off on a good note with the lead single "Live Like We're Dying". The song was originally by Irish popsters The Script and it doesn't stray too far from it. However, unlike most Idol singles, this one is quite different, featuring half-rapped, half-sung vocals (as awful as it sounds, it's done expertly). "Before We Come Undone" is not as fun but it is still a good pop song, largely due to Kris' vocal arrangement. Then comes the Maroon 5 sound-alike "Can't Stay Away". One of the better songs on the album, it's a fun, funky tune and probably the "rockingest" song on the album.
"The Truth" is where the listener realizes they are listening to an American Idol album and there are bound to be skippers, filler tracks and the like. "The Truth" borrows from other songs and is nothing new or original.
Fortunately, Kris comes back swinging with "Written All Over My Face" a slow jam that isn't really comparable to any other Idol winners. Sadly, "Bring It Back," the mopey Fray soundalike, is more filler.
"Red Guitar" was written by Kris and its mostly a nice song while "Is It Over?" sounds like Pete Yorn with Kris' voice. "Let It Rain" is nothing special, "Alright With Me" is genius and the best song on the album, "Lifetime" is a throwaway and "I Need to Know" is in an odd place, being a slow average ballad that ends of pretty good album.
So, while it may have its easily skippable material Kris' debut is a winner, mainly due to some great tunes and a terrific set of chops.
Glad to see someone reviewing this. As bad as I've heard the album is, I think Kris Allen just needs to get used to being famous. And also, I hope he does not go the country way. He has a very cool voice and I would like to see him doing something that more punk-ish. I loved his cover of "Heartless" by Kanye West during last years American Idol season. He's a good guy and deserved to win. Adam Lambert is making a fool of himself.