A Review of Shawn Mendes' "If I Can't Have You"

Shawn Mendes' latest single, and its accompanying music video on YouTube, is titled "If I Can't Have You". Upon first listen, I wasn't exactly sure if I liked it or not. It felt a lot different from his usual music, which was interesting because I couldn't quite figure out why. After my first listen, I walked away from it for a while, deciding to come back to it later to see if I could finally figure out how I really felt. My initial opinion was rather negative. The song was super repetitive, even if I did love the black and white music video, and every time the chorus hit, I waited for something more.

After my second listen, however, I think I can finally pinpoint my exact thoughts and feelings. First, the melody is incredibly catchy. I found myself randomly humming it throughout the day, and that's usually a sign of a job well done. Second, although the lyrics are rather shallow and repetitive, they are easy to pick up on and remember, which is also what artists probably strive to do. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, this song will be all over the radio in the coming days, and I am quite okay with that.


Animated GIFShawn Mendes is genuinely one of my favorite artists. There is a profound authenticity to his music that I deeply enjoy. Furthermore, his rise to fame is quite the story, especially considering the courage it takes to put your voice out there for everyone to hear and criticize. Since Shawn Mendes is enjoying a consistent amount of musical success, even modeling for Calvin Klein, I'd say his "rags to riches" rise is complete. 

In the end, I really do like the song, which isn't really surprising. There's certainly nothing revolutionary about it, but it has a unique sound, and I look forward to hearing more like it from Mendes in the future. For now, I'll be gushing over the beautiful cinematography from the music video like the film nerd that I am.