Adam Lambert’s TRESPASSING debuted at #1 on Billboard.
And it debuted at #1 in spite of the fact that there was virtually no radio play for the two singles that had been released, “Better Than I Know Myself” (BTIKM) and “Never Close Our Eyes” (NCOE).
BTIKM was released months before the album dropped on May 15th. Although I was critical of the choice, I understood why it was picked as it was an introduction to the album which reflects two sides of Adam. The genius video he created showed extreme versions of Adam’s light and dark sides, in rooms separated by a glass wall. At the end of the video Dark Adam breaks the glass and saves Light Adam and Adam is seen walking outside past some yellow and black caution tape mimicking the album cover.
Despite all the requesting, TV appearances and radio station promotional visits, BTIKM was barely played on the radio and was considered less than stellar.
NCOE was released around the same time the album dropped. Although I was even more critical of the choice than the first single, I hoped and trusted that the radio execs, Adam and RCA knew what they were doing. Adam appeared on American Idol and several other TV shows and did a mini tour headlining radio station concerts. I was able to attend two of these shows and you can read my recaps and see some videos by clicking on the links below.
Although it’s still too early to say if NCOE will be a top 40 hit, I haven’t heard it once on Pittsburgh radio and I am not hearing from other Glamberts that it is being played in their cities.
Although neither of these singles supports the mission statement of the album, they were chosen because they (don’t read this if you are squeamish) have a radio-friendly sound and fit into today’s mainstream Top 40 radio which I like to compare to the children’s board game CANDYLAND. It’s pink cotton candy, bubble gum and crap. It requires barely any thinking.
The mission statement of TRESPASSING is to walk bravely where you aren’t welcome, to step out of the box, to unashamedly be who you are. I read the many reviews of the album, and those authors have looked beyond the literal lyrics, using words like “sophisticated” and they get very articulate trying to describe the music Adam created and the sound of his voice. Here is a sampling of some reviews if you want to click on the links.
UNDER THE GUN
THE VILLAGE VOICE
PLAYBACK This is my favorite since this is a person who was NOT an Adam Lambert fan and fell in love. Resistance is futile. LOL
Notice that Adam is not compared to Ke$ha, Justin Beiber, LMFAO, Kelly Clarkson, Lady Gaga or even Bruno Mars who wrote NCOE. Adam is compared to Queen, Michael Jackson, Prince, Elton John and David Bowie, none of whom are EVER played on today’s Top 40 radio. But they are played on the radio on oldies, classic rock and stations that claim to play anything.
This leads me to believe that perhaps
Adam Lambert is too good for Top 40 radio.
Adam’s music is more like the game of Chess.
- There are dark pieces and light pieces and a variety of shapes and meanings.
- It’s complicated.
- It’s intelligent and even… strategic.
- It makes you think.
- It cannot be fully enjoyed in five minutes.
Even the dance party songs are about subjects that are too deep and mature for the Top 40 radio demographic. I have to hope that your average 15 year old has never experienced being in a club where a “girl” has had too much to drink and is trying to arrange a three way or has faced being told they will rot in hell because of who they love.
I am on record as saying that Adam Lambert will change the way we listen to and purchase music.
The old formula is that a song is released to radio.
Radio plays the song every hour.
People hear it.
People ‘think’ they like it.
People buy the single or the album.
Adam’s formula is that Glamberts buy multiple copies of TRESPASSING.
Glamberts listen to TRESPASSING on repeat instead of listening to the radio.
Glamberts call radio stations and beg them to play the singles.
Radio rarely plays the singles.
TRESPASSING debuts at #1.
Adam is in England right now rehearsing with Queen for six shows this summer. This iconic group has chosen Adam to front their band, and I don’t think it’s because he sounds as good as Bruno Mars. From my psychic outlook, I see Adam rehearsing with Queen and something organic rises from the burning embers. They will begin jamming and improvising and a new song will be born. This song is so good that Queen will decide to release it and then dare radio to play it. And I go back to what I have been saying for months, that Freddie Mercury has something to do with it.
ROCK ON! ADAM LAMBERT
ROCK ON! QUEEN
ROCK ON! QUEENBERT