Album Review: Camila Cabello's ‘Romance’

Cuban born singer-songwriter Camila Cabello released her long-anticipated second studio album at midnight and, as expected, it has been a huge hint with her die-hard fans.

Romance’s release follows months of single releases, including the global sensation Señorita which she sang, and later performed, with boyfriend Shawn Mendes.The album, just like her relationship with Mendes, has received mix reviews. Whilst the Independent awarded the singer with a 4-star rating, the Guardian, NME, and the Telegraph all delivered less favourable reviews.

There’s no doubt that Cabello has not particularly pushed any boundaries with this album. Six of the fourteen songs had already been released as singles, all of which were very similar in genre and topic. It’s to be expected, I guess, when the album is called Romance.What this album does feel like, however, is a stepping stone towards Cabello solidifying some sort of individual identity as an artist – something she has arguably struggled with since parting with band Fifth Harmony.

Cabello’s lyrics, although cliché, feel somewhat emotive and personal to her own life, particularly in Bad Kind of Butterflies and First Man, a moving tribute to her Dad. A similar route was taken by Taylor Swift and Ariana Grande, with her smash album Thank U, Next, whose success was attributed to her more personal lyrics.

Aside from the serious stuff, there are also, of course, some inarguable bops on Romance. My Oh My, featuring DaBaby, is recorded over a halloweeny, bassy backtrack with Cabello’s signature Latin-twinge, and is bound to be a fan favourite.Romance also feels more adult than her first album Camila, which was certifiably tween in its themes. Her raspy, desperate voice on songs Shameless, Dream of You, and Cry for Me makes her emotion sound believable and raw, unlike the sickly pop vocals that Camila showcased.

In classic pop style, the autotune on Romance is, at some points, overbearing. But when the autotune is dialled down, Cabello’s beautiful vocals shine through, reminding us of why her solo career has, and continues to, move from strength to strength.

 

You can stream Romance on all platforms now. And, as Camila took to Instagram to suggest, why not enjoy ‘a glass of wine in the tub’ whilst you’re at it?