Artist: Samantha Newark
Album: Something Good
Review by Andrea Guy
Samantha Newark is probably best known as the voice of Jerrica and Jem from the 80s cartoon series, Jem and the Holograms, but she is more than that. She may not have been the singing voice of Jem, but when you listen to Something Good, you’ll wonder why she wasn’t.
Samantha Newark has a voice that really grabs you. Once it has a good grip on you, it pulls you out on the dance floor. Something Good is synth pop at its best. Samantha combines sensual vocals with great beats and loops and molds them into music that stirs something in your soul.
The album is aptly named. In a world where most dance music doesn’t offer much more than a few pleasant moments, Samantha’s album offers much more while still delivering what you’d expect from a synth pop album.
Maybe it is because Samantha’s voice is similar to Stacey Q. Maybe it is because sometimes the album is more than just dance music—like, for example, “Blue Sea,” which is very ethereal in its vocal. Whatever it is, Samantha Newark is an artist that you want to listen to.
There’s more to Samantha’s music than her great voice. She also wrote or co-wrote all eleven songs on Something Good. The songs are deeper than the usual club fare, but they still offer up enough fun that they make you want to get on the dance floor. Nothing is more fun than “Hands On Me,” a super-sexy song about sex in the sky. Samantha’s breathy voice and the thumping beats give that extra oomph that pushes you over the edge. If that song isn’t sexy enough for you, then there is “Like.”
“I’ve Got Everything” is the album’s opening track and it really sets the stage for dancing. The beats will compel you to move. The drum track is so strong, it will propel you out of your chair. If you aren’t dancing after about 30 seconds, you are probably comatose!
The title track has a strong beat and it really is an anthem for having hope for better things…erm, for “Something Good.” This is the song that will stick with you for days and the one you’ll want to blast in the car. Every good synth pop album should have a song like this.
If great dance tracks aren’t enough for you, Samantha will woo you with romance. “Lover” may have a dance beat, but the lyrics are pure sensuality - “Come to me sweetly, I’ll be in the bedroom down the hall. You are my lover, with you I know I never have to call.” Any woman listening to these words will long for the guy she’s singing about.
She doesn’t forget the break-up songs either. Samantha’s “End Of The Road” is a short, sweet song of a woman fed up with her man. Samantha scores points for a slow, sexy beat and gets bonus points for these lyrics: “You tell me you’re sorry, but it ain’t gonna work this time. Now that I am older and wiser I just don’t wanna hear you whine.”
Dance music is not something that usually has lyrics that you can relate to. Just think of some of the songs on Top 40 radio right now. But that’s not the case with Samantha. Her songs convey things that many of us feel.
Something Good is one of this year’s best dance albums. Samantha packs a one-two punch with smart and fun lyrics and great beats to keep you moving. Anyone looking for an album to make them get up and shake it will be thrilled with this.
Review by Andrea Guy
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)