Camila Oh Na Na, this girl was born in Havana oh na na, and she used to be in Fifth Harmony oh na na. Camila Cabello finally released her self-titled debut album “Camila” last week, on the 12th January 2018. I really had no expectations for this album, I liked every song she had released in 2017 and became a fan of her immediately. Actually, I’m a fan of her since her collaboration with Shawn Mendes. I used to be a fan of Fifth Harmony just because of her. Without her vocals in the songs of 5H, something is really missing. Camila worked very hard in 2017 on her new songs and on many collaborations with other artists. 2018 will be her year, she released her debut album and I assume that she will be on tour very soon, maybe even with a world tour. I hope she will surprise us with more creative music videos and unexpected collaborations. Let’s look at her newest tracks.
Never Be the Same
Was released as the second single of the album on 7th December 2017, together with the promotional single “Real Friends”. In this song, Camila reflects on the feeling of falling in love with someone, who changes your personality. She used drug consumption as a metaphor for this event. And these metaphors give the song a special vibe and make it original. She sings very low during the verses and changes to very high in the pre-chorus. I assume she almost uses her whole vocal range in this song. She admits having known from the beginning that he would change her. In the bridge, she explains that he took control of her entire body: “You’re in my blood, you’re in my veins, you’re in my head”.
All These Years
“All These Years” is about meeting suddenly your ex again after so many years. Naturally, such an event brings back all the memories you made with this person. This is exactly what Camila is singing about in this song. But it’s worse, her ex-boyfriend has a new girl and she is still after him. In the bridge, she confesses that she should have told him earlier that she still loves him. I guess a lot of young women can relate to this slow song. Camila is telling a personal story with a strong impact.
She Loves Control
Camila admits being a control freak in this song. This one could be the next Havana because the arrangement is very similar to other Latin songs. In fact, they used samples of the song Então Vai by Pabllo Vittar. Maybe this part of her character was one of the reasons why she left Fifth harmony, because she wanted to control her career, and this isn’t easy if you’re opinion counts only 1/5. However, it is a dance song and it should inspire young girls to be more confident and to take control.
Havana ft. Young Thug
Released on 3rd August as the lead single of the album. It is her first number one song it peaked at #1 on Billboard Hot 100. I’m sure you all know and heard the line “Havana oh na na” before. Havana refers to her hometown in Cuba. The lyrics are about falling in love with a bad boy. She co-wrote this song with Pharrell Williams, every song in which this man is involved turns out to be great. The rap part by Young Thug starts very well but gets dirty and meaningless towards the end. The trumpet in the instrumentals, which appears in the 2nd half of the song, makes the song more appealing.
“Inside Out” is a catchy pop dance song mixed with reggaetón, this genre is getting more and more popular. She is singing to her lover in this song, she tells him that she wants to love him inside out, meaning: everything about him, his character and his look. She wants to be the only girl for him, she promises that her love will be enough. In the bridge, she uses a Spanish line. This song will put you in a good mood for sure.
Finally, the first ballad appears on the album. I love ballads. Yes, it is a breakup song. But the lyrics are legendary. She reflects on how it was to love her ex-boyfriend, she mentions the good parts, her faults, and the consequences. She even changes the last chorus to a negative version of the original chorus to reinforce the consequences of this relationship. Camila broached the issue of a breakup in an original way in her lyrics. Every breakup has its own costs but it’s not easy to talk about them openly. Her soft vocals are accompanied by a mellow piano. My favorite track so far. Raw and personal.
“Real Friends” is about finding REAL friends. Camila refers this situation especially to L.A.; how difficult it is to find real friends there since the most people are selfish and just about their own benefits. Camila admitted in an interview that she hates Los Angeles just because of this fact. She is rather in Miami where she grew up and don’t get much attention from the paparazzi. Camila is not the only singer, who wrote a song about finding real friends in Hollywood. Just remember Bebe Rexha’s song (Fuck Fake Friends). I also can relate to this song, because I’m also looking for some further real friends for a long time, especially for male friends. Maybe Camila and I could be friends too, we are both Lovatics and love pop music.
Something’s Gotta Give
Another piano ballad and I love it. This one is about realizing that the relationship with someone doesn’t work anymore because you are the only one, who puts effort into it. You give so much and receive nothing back. My favorite line: “No reason to stay is a good reason to go”. Camila admitted that this song is based on a personal relationship. She has touching strong vocals, which make this ballad more emotional. I love it.
In the Dark
Finding real friends in L.A. is not the only struggle, also finding a real lover is not easy. Everyone wants to present himself from his best side, but who wants to fall in love without knowing the dark side of the person. Camila definitely not. She described in an interview the content as: “this song is about, me wanting to know the real person, not the famous person”. Can you guess, who this famous boy could be? These social problems are not only in Los Angeles. I live in Switzerland and my peers are not better and they aren’t even famous yet. I think this is how the social media changed our society. I don’t know who they are in the dark.
“Into It” is the only sexual song on the album and I love it. You can dance to it and it’s so much fun to listen and sing along. She gave us all a new pick-up line: “I see a king-sized bed in the corner, we should get into it”. She sings about being crazy for someone and about being ready for whatever this person wants to do with you. The lyrics and her vocals are perfect, but the instrumentals could be better.
Favorite tracks: Consequences, Real Friends, Something’s Gotta Give, In the Dark, Into It
It takes only 37 minutes to listen to the whole album, she only put 7 new songs and her former 3 singles into it. The entire record is very short in my opinion. But therefore, every song has quality and there aren’t any fillers. What I also noticed is that in several songs the 2nd verse last half so long than the 1st verse, which also makes the songs shorter. I definitely want to hear more of her. She has done a good job and she really should be proud of herself. Camila also co-wrote on every song, what I really appreciate in young singers. Only the Havana collaboration is included and there aren’t further collaborations with other artists. Due to this fact, the album deserves to be called a self-titled album. Her vocals are strong and adequate.
Camila Cabello is 20 years old, just three months younger than me, and she really managed to describe in a truthful way how it feels like to be a 20-years-old adolescent in today’s society. I can relate to the message of the album and I can’t wait for a deluxe edition with more songs, or why not a second album in a year. I’m sure that this is only the beginning of a long-lasting career in the music industry for her. What do you think about “Camila”? Which song is your favorite one? Thanks. Eren
Update (23.01.18): Her album is #1 on Billboard 200. She did it. Wuuuhhuuuuu!!!!