Places, Lea Michele | Album Review

Friday 5 May 2017

Lea Michele
Reviewed by Olivia Mitchell

Lea Michele's second solo album, Places was released on April 28th and flew to the top of the US pop charts, reaching number one almost as soon as it came out. It features a number of emotional ballads as well as some more upbeat songs which all flow together and scream emotion at every moment. In a recent interview Lea said that this album is more her true sound with both pop and musical theatre influences mixed in, it's not an album where she tries to fit a mould or sell to a certain market, it's just her.

Places is very slow-ballad heavy which could be a problem for some people but I thrive on those sorts of songs and honestly can't think of anything better than an all-out, belt for your life, dramatic album so I love it! The lyrics are theatrical and every song really plays to Lea's strengths as a singer, hitting each note with enough power and force to match Barbra and Celine.

This album flows very well indeed, each song holding its own and nothing is there just to fill space. Places is the perfect album for so many occasions, be it getting ready to go out, driving with the windows down, hiking or just while you're in the house living your best life. There's a song for everything and it's so personal and intimate that it feels like the exact album to accompany life and all its goings on.

The intimacy is what really makes Places special. Lea is baring her soul and showing us all her ups and downs through these songs. I want to tell you my favourite song but honestly it changes every five minutes so I can't but at the moment I am loving 'Run To You', 'Heavy Love' and 'Sentimental Memories'. The theme throughout the album is one of empowerment and pushing through whatever life throws at you. There is motivation beyond belief with 'Anything's Possible' especially, making you feel like you can conquer the world!

The amazing thing about Lea's voice is how it manages to be so strong but raw at the same time. She shows off her wide range well and moves between voice parts so smoothly it's just joyous to hear. Lea has always been an idol of mine and hearing this elegant piece of work made me even more inspired by her. 

Places refers to the call before starting a show where you're called to your place for the beginners call. The title seems very apt as it marks the start of a new chapter for Lea but to me I see the title as the sign to take my place, listen to this album, feel strong and motivated as hell and then to run at life full speed and live each moment to the fullest. So if you want to be inspired by both brilliant songs and flawless vocals then this is definitely an album you need in your collection. Lea really comes into her own and it's evident how much love and time has gone in to making this the best album it can be. Bravo!