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LISTEN: Sam Smith’s Fourth Studio Album ‘Gloria’ Has Arrived

After taking streaming and radio charts by storm and going viral around the world over the past few months with his Kim Petras-assisted single ‘Unholy’, Sam Smith has finally unveiled their fourth studio album ‘Gloria’ this week.

‘Gloria’ is not only a creative revelation but something of a personal one, too. It’s the sound of constricting shackles crashing to the floor, of boundaries joyfully breached, of a still-searching talent discovering what it means to be truly free – to be in touch with their innermost self.

A creative challenge for the celebrated hitmaker, Sam set out to craft the opposite of a heartbreak album; they wanted to construct the armor they craved when growing up, the record they wished they had to accompany their formative years. Gloria leans on some celebrated female figures from Sam’s musical world (Jessie Reyez, Kim Petras, Koffee), as well as exploring themes of sex, passion, self-expression and imperfection.

The album’s title is not a nod to a person, past or present, but to that bristling, enigmatic life force, which Smith has christened, Gloria.

When speaking about their album Sam explains: “Gloria is also a celebration of all the genres and all the female divas, vocalists and pop writers that I love. I harnessed all those memories and put them into one album. And I wanted to be defiant. My diva album? I think so! I think I’ve finally let my Gloria out.” Long-term collaborators Jimmy Napes, Stargate and Max Martin stablemate ILYA further helped fuel the 13-track album which boldly weaves between glitterball electro pop, glorious melodic reverie, Jamaican dancehall freak-pop, exquisite piano balladry and a choir-sung hymn.

The star also shares the flamboyant visuals for the Calvin Harris-produced, ‘I’m Not Here To Make Friends’ which has been confirmed as the next single off the project.

Directed by Tanu Muino (Lil Nas X, Harry Styles, Normani), the music video for ‘I’m Not Here To Make Friends’, sees Sam as a vision in pink (custom made by Tomo Koizumi), as they arrive in style – stepping out of a gold helicopter and greeted by a Bacchanalian-inspired celebration. Hedonistic, thrilling and compelling, we witness Sam in their element as they take over a country house filled with revelry at every corner, fully embracing their moment. The visuals see Sam going full wrecking ball as they swing from a grand chandelier whilst the track crescendos, and party-goers fawn around them. An allegory for unapologetic individuality, the visuals denote freedom, joy and self-expression, a canny introduction to the overarching theme of the album to come.

Listen to ‘Gloria’ below and read more music news here.


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