Following his applauded return to Asking Alexandria in 2016, Danny Worsnop has shifted focus back into being a solo artist for a little while. In a welcomed evolution, the acclaimed metalcore vocalist now channels his creative energy into more luxurious, smooth endeavours on his sophomore LP, ‘Shades Of Blue’.
‘Little Did I Know’ invites the release into existence: a folksy, bluesy, jazzy concoction of suave guitars and honeyed vocal deliveries. Melodies sway and groove alongside the lilting beats, and the delectable versatility of Worsnop‘s voice is obvious. He reclines in the newfound silkiness of his music, as his confidence shines through in the likes of ‘Best Bad Habit’; a choppy, metallic track that does Worsnop‘s graveled voice the perfect justice.
Dialing down the swagger at intervals elevates ‘Shades Of Blue’ to a level of elegance. ‘I’ve Been Down’ bares all, charmingly detailing the tormenting but necessary process of separation, as raw backing vocals bumble atop dwindled acoustic guitars to give the track an esteemed glow.
Sheens of unapologetic emotion are found when you pick apart the tracks, as outwardly gut-wrenching songs like ‘Tomorrow’ and ‘At The Time’ brazenly detail elements of Worsnop‘s psyche that would have previously been snuffed by the aggression of his heavier output with Asking Alexandria and even supergroup We Are Harlot.
Where Worsnop once found solace in wreaking havoc to release built-up emotion, his maturity crackles at the surface of his second solo full-length. The glazed authenticity of his words, in tracks like ‘Edge Of Goodbye’, now rings out in his flawless vibrato, caramelised grit, and ability to mesh smoothly with clean vocals.
The album takes on a country feel as it progresses, with the twanged ‘Tell Her I Said Hey’ tipping its hat to subtle weavings of emotive lyricism and oaky, warm instrumentation. This confident slink is recurrent throughout the album, hinting at its presence from the earlier likes of ‘Keep On Lovin” – a smoky depiction of internal turmoil.
Although ‘Shades Of Blue’ is somewhat repetitive in its stylistic execution, Worsnop has blossomed into his destined genre as a solo singer/songwriter, and shows no signs of creatively stagnating. He’s stepped into suede leather boots and slid into a pool of honey, bidding farewell to his antagonistic adolescence, and, if he can continue to transition and evolve at this rate, his directional possibilities are endless.