The Honest Me P1
By Mike O’Cull www.mikeocull.com
French songwriter Maxime is a multifaceted musician well-versed in many different dialects of lyrical songs and radio-worthy hooks. His latest album, The Honest Me P1, is the first installment in a cinematic series of records that is chock full of impressive tracks and presents Maxime to the world as a fully-developed pop tunesmith. Born to a musical theater family, he played cello for 11 years but knew his musical path wouldn’t be the same one his parents took. He discovered the guitar during college and began writing music. He wrote over 50 songs and, knowing he needed to get them out of himself, began to record them.
The Honest Me P1 opens with the shining “Is This Love?,” a breathy Cat Stevens-ish folk song with a lovely orchestral side. The song expands as it progresses and builds to an uplifting theatricality that belies its hushed beginning. Maxime has a clear, strong voice and vocal tone that makes him exciting and accessible here and throughout the album. “WTTW (Welcome To The World)” is an emotive pop ballad with a unique arrangement that will make you hang on every line.
The smoldering “Look At Me Now (Feat. Sheryl)” is a dramatic duet that rises and falls like the lyrical characters involved and is this set’s artistic high point. Maxime puts down a genuinely powerful and individual sound and style that makes this a hit single for the thinking fan. His combination of modern production ideas and classic vocal skills is an immediate winner and deserves to break out to a larger audience. Be sure to also spin “Damned” and “Tonight.”
Maxime is a welcome new presence on the pop music scene and creates sounds tailor-made for young moderns. He’s one of this year’s most compelling emerging artists and will have a long career in front of him if he keeps making records like this. You need these songs. Start listening.
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