Featured Photo Credit: Alexandra Gavillet
Lewis Capaldi’s 2019 debut album, Divinely Uninspired to a Hellish Extent, propelled him to international acclaim through his unique voice and smooth production. His sophomore effort, Broken by Desire to Be Heavenly Sent, is a worthy follow-up. Sometimes, the second time reminds you of exactly how you felt the first. “I bring her coffee in the morning, she brings me inner peace,” sings Lewis Capaldi in the second single from the new album, “Pointless.” Capaldi’s tenor soars, especially in the three singles released so far before and after the album’s release.
The album is not without flaws. The middle of the album blends a little too well; if you start with “Haven’t You Ever Been in Love Before,” you might be forgiven to believe that it and the following track, “Love The Hell Out Of You,” were a single seven-ish minute track. The album picks up its energy again with “Burning,” and Capaldi’s wounded, blue-eyed-soul-inflected voice soars through all of his tracks, so even the middle, a difficult place for many albums where the merely average tracks typically go to die, remains a powerful testament to the golden pipes that landed Capaldi his debut record.
The first album is always made out of the songs that got the biggest responses from touring audiences, leaving a difficult act for the sophomore album to follow up. There is the potential for a second album to be either B-sides or all-new songs that might not land. Capaldi avoids this, keeping his quality high. The production is there and it’s as polished and sentimental as in its predecessor. There are two ways to go in a sophomore outing, and Capaldi and his collaborators and producers embrace the obvious: Keep doing what you’re doing. Make your fans happy. And while Broken by Desire to Be Heavenly Sent doesn’t break any new ground, it will make fans of the original quite happy indeed.