By Din Gjidija
Swedish-born D.J. Avicii, otherwise known as Tim Bergling, has always been known for his synth-sounding, electronic dance tracks. His latest album “TRUE“ released through PRMD/Island Def Jam, is the 24 year old’s first studio album. It moves away from Electronic Dance Music and more toward a newly found folk and dance style.
Right before his big set at the 15th Annual Ultra Music Festival, Avicii told Billboard “’TRUE’ is about me being true to my sound but also to my own influences and musical preferences.”
During his set at Ultra there was a lot of criticism because fans didn’t like that he went from his trademark Electronic Dance to Bluegrass. They didn’t like that he did so at such a huge festival. Ultra is not a place where you experiment new things; it’s where you show off your big guns.
Avicii reached mainstream success with his 2011 title “Levels.” Since then, he has never put out his own studio album. He has headlined some of the biggest festivals in the world and has had hit after hit.
It’s hard to tell if it’s the Mumford and Sons-styled banjos or if it’s the 70’s disco-esque that keeps listeners. His choice of sound is different; it’s something no other big name D.J. has done before. A crossover between folk, funk, and dance is unheard of in the dance genre. Teens go to festivals to see D.J.’s perform dance hits, not bluegrass.
Although being criticized by fans and D.J.’s everywhere for his set at Ultra Music Festival, today Avicii is battling Jay-Z and Katy Perry for the number one spot on the charts. His Single “Wake Me Up” has already showed success around the world as it was #1 in ten countries and peaked at #4 on Billboards Hot 100. The track features vocals from artist Aloe Blacc, who is an American Soul singer.
“You Make Me” is the second track off the album and features Salem Al Fakir, known for his vocals on “Silhouettes.” It has a fun vibe to it; from the start you hear a piano with an upbeat tempo, which then leads into Fakir’s vocals “I’ve been waiting for someone like you.” By now you’re so hooked, you can’t help but to finish it.
“Lay Me Down” combines Disco and Funk with Electronic Dance Music. It’s a real catchy tune and features vocals from artist Adam Lambert and guitarist Nile Rodgers. It gives off the same vibe that Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” gave off. “Heart Upon My Sleeve” featuring Imagine Dragons front man Dan Reynolds and starts off with a chilling solo of Reynolds playing acoustic guitar, then kicks into Avicii’s signature synths. “TRUE” does not include the vocal edit;
this is found on Avicii’s SoundCloud page.
“Dear Boy” headlining Audra Mae, features some of Avicii’s old trademark sounds, so anyone who’s a fan of his old work will enjoy this track. It has “chart topper” written all over it.
Avicii’s biggest strength in this album is how well he combines the folk, funk, and dance. If “TRUE” is any indication of what’s to come, we may be in for a real treat.