Bebe Rexha’s debut album has been a long time in the making but the New York singer-songwriter’s hard work has finally paid off. ‘Expectations’ is a bold and eclectic body of work that hears her showcasing her RNB roots along with her pop-rock polish. This record is very pop orientated and highlights her undeniable strengths which are songwriting and vocals. Opening with the power ballad ‘Ferrari’ she offers a rhythmic production that incorporates gritty guitar riffs and big drums. The emotional self-reflective track will have you feeling empowered after a first listen which perfectly leads into the ultimate vibey anthem ‘I’m A Mess’. There is a reason why this song has been selected as the next single and that’s because it has HIT written all over it. It explores the feeling of not feeling you’re enough and embracing your vulnerabilities and realising they are strengths. “Everything’s gonna be alright. Everything’s gonna be Ok. It’s gonna be a good good life, that’s what my therapists say”. ‘2 Souls On Fire’ continues the rhythmic sound with a Camila Capello inspired vocal delivery that will have your body moving, grooving and shaking. This also has the potential to break commercial radio and I surprisingly don’t hate Quavo’s verse, so that’s a first. ‘Shining Star’ incorporates a latin production with a pop polish but compared to the previous tracks it is a little skippable. She quickly recovers with the vulnerable pop ballad ‘Knees’ that asks for someone to be honest not just to you but to themselves if they aren’t in love anymore. It’s moments like this and ‘Sad’ where her vocals and songwriting really shine. ‘Self Control’ is a ‘Despacito’ inspired banger that will no doubt find it’s way to radio but it’s the anthem ‘I Got You’ which still deserves justice on the charts and radio as it’s easily the strongest track she’s ever released. But for some reason ‘Meant To Be’ reigned the charts for way too long and heard her embody a country sound which is a little confusing in comparison to the rest of the record. But while the first half of the record is strong and full of memorable moments it’s the second half which greatly disappoints. Tracks like ‘Mine’, ‘Steady, ‘Don’t Get Any Close’, ‘Grace’ and ‘Pillow’ lack the same impact the rest of the album delivered and are easily forgettable. I wanted more empowering rhythmic moments that made tracks like ‘I’m A Mess’ and ‘I Got You’ so special. But sadly after you listen to ‘Sad’ you milsewell turn the album off and just pretend that she released an incredible 7 track EP instead. I still believe that Bebe Rexha is one of the most promising pop starts because she has an authentic honesty the translates into her songwriting as well as delivering a cool rhythmic production that makes her live shows unforgettable. And throughout this whole record she showcases her powerful vocal delivery that is very versatile and can adapt to pretty much any genre she wants to tackle. Let’s not forget that a couple of years ago she was touring across America with Vans Warped Tour offering a heavier rock edge to her predominately pop sound.
You can purchase a copy of Bebe Rexha’s album from Sanity now https://www.sanity.com.au/products/2372811/Expectations