It’s a quarter after midnight and I just discovered this album. “Temporary Love” is an amazing song that has completely–and I don’t use this phrase lightly–snatched my wig.
It’s now a more reasonable time of day and I’m exploring more of the album and collecting my thoughts. First, a small intro to who Ben Platt is. Any fans of Pitch Perfect will recognize him as the magic-loving adorkable Benji. From those movies he went on to play the title role in Dear Evan Hansen for two years. I’ve never gotten into that musical, but it cemented him as a Broadway heavyweight. Now he’s released his debut album, an indescribable masterpiece. It’s an ode to the triumphs and heartbreaks of love. You’ll see the phrase “heartfelt plea” many times throughout this review, and that’s because a lot of Platt’s songs convey such deep emotions. His style can best be described as a vocal combination of Sam Smith and Adam Levine and a visual aesthetic of “Chris Evans but Broadway”. Some of Platt’s song titles are a bit misleading-“Temporary Love” is about commitment and “Run Away” is about staying with someone.
- “Bad Habit“-The álbum opens with a bittersweet acknowledgment of loneliness and a plea to return to a comfortable love, even if it’s not healthy. This song is incredibly self aware and vulnerable and I like it a lot.
- “Ease My Mind“-This is a bittersweet song about how the love of someone else helps calm a restless mind. It’s pretty, but relying on another to calm us isn’t always the healthiest…
- “Temporary Love“-This is the second song I found from this album but the first that gripped me. It’s a heartfelt plea for trust and intimacy in a relationship, with a soaring piano melody and vocals to match.
- “Grow As We Go“-This is the first song I found of his, it’s a lovely plea for someone to be willing to stay with him and grow together through life. While it’s a lovely song, if someone sang a song like that to me, I would still be willing to turn them down. Someone can love you with all of their heart and still not be the best for you.
- “Honest Man“-This one has a similar begging tone to Grow as We Go, but it’s at the start of a possible relationship. Platt begs a lover to let him in and allow true intimacy, something I can relate to on so many levels.
- “Hurt Me Once“-This song brought actual tears to my eyes. It’s a desperate plea to be released from a pitiful relationship and it hit hard for me the first time I heard it.
- “New“-This is a very upbeat song regarding the joy of being free from a bad situation and able to live independently. One of the neatest sonic things on the record is the final note of this song when Platt goes as low as he possibly can.
- “Better“-“Do you know me better than I know myself” is the questioning refrain of this song, asking a missed lover. To be honest, this song didn’t really get to me much.
- “Share Your Address“-This song is pretty upbeat, about envisioning a whole life with someone right off the bat. He admits in the song it’s too far too fast, and I would have to absolutely agree. However, it’s so catchy and cheerful that it’s still very sweet.
- “In Case You Don’t Live Forever“-My absolute favorite line is “I’m pretty sure it would kill me if you didn’t know that pieces of me are pieces of you”. The simple piano ballad is about expressing just how much someone means and a sheer desperation to get the words out. It’s so beautiful and tender and heartfelt and it’s one of the best songs on the record.
- “Older“-This is a beautiful song about appreciating every stage of life and not wishing for something else. The chorus has the line “don’t let your wonder turn into closure” which is something all young people should keep in mind. This would be my favorite song on the record.
- “Run Away“-The chorus has some lovely high notes, and it’s a nice song about lovers staying committed to each other and building a sweet family.
This is a pretty stellar debut from a seasoned artist. It’s personal, vulnerable, and very melodic. 9/10, would recommend to fans of Sam Smith or Broadway.