Oh, no way. Really? James Bay recorded something fantastic? How very shocking.
Three years ago, the soulful English singer-songwriter released his debut LP, Chaos and the Calm. It was easily one of the year’s best records, supplying us with gems like “Let It Go,” “Hold Back The River,” “Scars” and “If You Ever Want To Be In Love” among other gems.
And now, James is finally ready to serve up a second serving: “Wild Love” is our first taste of whats to come from Album #2. The song premiered today (February 8) on BBC Radio 1’s Annie Mac Show as her “Hottest Record In The World.” It was composed in East London’s Baltic Studios, James co-wrote and co-produced the track with longtime friend and collaborator Jon Green and brought onboard Paul Epworth [Adele, Florence and The Machine] to add final production elements.
“I know some of this new sound was not apparent on my first album – there were hints, perhaps – but I think my new music helps to paint a fuller picture of who I am,” James said in a statement. “As soon as I recognized I was being pinned down as ‘the intimate acoustic guitar guy’ I realized I knew I had to push myself musically. I want it as part of my arsenal, but I don’t want that solely to define me. I’m not there yet, but hope that this new music can do for singer-songwriter, loosely, what Drake and Chance The Rapper are doing for their genre: tearing up the rule book.”
As a result, “Wild Love” is certainly a change in direction for the talented crooner. It’s a delicate, atmospheric production, as James‘ voice smoothly glides across moody synthesizers and minimal drum loops. “I wanna give you wild love/ The kind that never slows down/ I wanna take you high up/ Let our hearts be the only sound/ I wanna go where the lights burn low and you’re only mine/ I wanna give you wild love,” he echoes as his voice increasingly gets creepily distorted throughout.
As a first impression, this is a terribly exciting sign of what’s to come. A welcome change in pace for James. On the song he stated: “‘Wild Love‘ is about the experience of falling for someone. Something you can feel immediately when you meet them for the first time, or which rekindles throughout a relationship. It’s also about yearning for someone – whether that’s the person you can’t keep your eyes off across the room, or in my experience, the person you don’t stop thinking about wherever you are in the world.”