Acknowledging the overwhelming success of Calvin Harris might sound like an echo. But seriously, let’s take a minute to recognize that this Scottish-producer is seriously popping off.
After the massive success of his last album, 18 Months, Harris is once again reestablishing his throne at the top of EDM with the next album of seemingly smash-hit singles, Motion.
Although it arrived without much noise, the album has taken some time for fans (and critics) to digest. Similar to his business model for 18 Months, Harris released the first track off Motion almost one year ago.
The first song he released was “Under Control” – in collaboration with Alesso and Hurts – a spark to the hits that would come. And the next, and probably the most notable off the album, was “Summer.”
In his epic return as a singer, songwriter and producer – “Summer” effectively took over every radio and satellite frequency across the world from June to September.
It was the return of Calvin Harris as an enigma. The singer, the songwriter and the producer that we’ve come to love.
Granted, there’s a lot of singer, song-writer and producers in the world. But when you think about it, how many of them consistently pump out international smash-hits, over-and-over, while doing so?
The answer? Not many.
Adam Richard Wiles (aka ‘Calvin Harris’) knows how to stick to his guns – as an artist and a business mogul. He knows how to make his own music, and make a fortune in the meantime.
When he released the complete version of his third studio album, 18 Months, in October 2012 – it was astonishing to see how many number-one tracks the album contained. While the method of releasing tracks on a rolling basis leading up to the release is unordinary, it has no doubt become one of the many niches that Harris should be admired for.
Because after all, he’s as good of a musician as he is a business man.
And although that might be feared and criticized by some, it must be respected by all.
18 Months contained massively-popular singles like “Bounce”, “Feel So Close”, “Let’s Go”, “We’ll Be Coming Back”, “Sweet Nothing”, “Drinking from the Bottle”, “I Need Your Love”, and “Thinking About You”. Deal with it.
Thanks to this album of absolute gold, Harris now holds the record for the most top-ten hits from one studio album on the UK Singles Chart, surpassing Michael Jackson with nine.
All of the singles on 18 Months reached the UK top 10, and Harris found even more success during his breakout with his collaboration with Rihanna, and their internationally-electrifying single, “We Found Love.”
People who never thought they were an “EDM fan” began to jam out to the irresistible synth-pop dance-provoking sound that Calvin Harris has masterfully crafted slowly but surely over his groundbreaking career.
To make this personal, “Feel So Close” was one of the few songs that opened my eyes to Electronic Dance Music.
He wrote, sang and produced one of the greatest EDM songs of all time. But of course, that’s in my opinion.
And regardless of your opinion, he did it again this past summer, with “Summer.” The song was the closest thing to his most previous worldwide sensation, “Feel So Close.” Much like that song set the tone for 18 Months, “Summer” has set the tone for Motion.
Love it or leave it, Motion contains 15 examples of why Calvin Harris is one of the most confident, and thus most successful artists in the game.
In adding to his trophy case of golden albums like We Created Disco and Ready For The Weekend, this album will go down as the next brave endeavor of EDM’s most successful business man.
That’s why this singer, songwriter and producer is on another level.
“Some of the Scottish producer’s biggest hits feature his distinctive voice (“Summer“, “Feel So Close“, and “I’m Not Alone” to name a few), but his producing/singing hybrid returned after a brief hiatus. Harris once performed as a live vocalist, and his announcement that would quit singing scared many fans into thinking he planned to retire his singing altogether. Luckily Harris’ singing returned on record with “Feel So Close”, the first track to crossover onto the Billboard charts in America. The rest is history.” – EDM.com
We’ll admit, his performance at Lollapalooza 2014 was dismal. Honestly, probably the most disappointing performance at the festival.
We only say this because we, like you, have had our doubts about Calvin Harris. He seems all over the place, but he’s not.
If anything, he’s right on point. The definition of success is doing what you love. But the real definition of success is doing what you love, and making a killing while doing it.
Calvin Harris has stuck to his roots in the studio, and has produced another massive album to prove it. Even though he seemed to have lost his touch on stage when we saw him in August, he still remembers how to be EDM’s biggest crowd-pleaser.
As it seems, Motion will be even bigger than his last albums. He might be all over the radio over the next year because of it, but that’s okay.
Because that’s what Calvin Harris does better than anybody.
Highlight from Calvin Harris’ new album, Motion:
In a return project with Ellie Goulding, “Outside” is catchy from the second you hear it. Maybe it’s because another jam from Harris and Goulding would be good before you even heard it, it’s nice to see the two are working together again.
As for “Open Wide” ft. Big Sean, I’m not the biggest fan of his twist on the big-room sound. That said, the crisp rhythm was maneuvered with ease. Which, of course, isn’t easy when you’re dealing with a unique rapper like Big Sean.
After the massive success of “I Don’t Fuck With You” (produced by Kanye West), Big Sean has transitioned to the studio of another internationally-renowned producer, Calvin Harris.
Now, of course, the real highlight (other than Summer) is “Blame.”
With up-and-comer vocalist John Newman as the star of this track (and “Faith,” the first track on “Motion”), this will surely be one of the widely-remembered singles on the album.
(Featured photo by Deviant Art)