ALBUM REVIEW: Tori Kelly Returns With Angelic ‘Inspired By True Events’

Tori Kelly has lived the dream as a young talent discovered on YouTube who skyrocketed to fame, has had an abundance of success and recently bagged two Grammy’s – or so it seems.

Although you may not have noticed, Tori Kelly has had a tough few years in the process of making her third studio album and all you need to know has been laid bare as Tori shed’s a new light on the struggles she’s overcame, pain and perseverance in her most vulnerable project to date.

Inspired by true events is a truly captivating journey combining bright coming of age revelations with melancholic sad bangers as she pours her heart out and leaves nothing to the imagination.

Kelly Kicks off the album with an angelic, choral harmony and sets the tone for what’s to come – A mixture of guitar-led, laid back acoustic numbers and punchier pop-rock moments laced with dreamy vocals, chilling high notes and a roller coaster of emotions.

‘Coffee’, introduces the album as she yearns for the company of a loved one sharing her experience of long-distance love which builds to become a punchy earworm enticing you to keep listening.

The two time Grammy winner has a powerful voice but knows when to show it off, nothing about this album is pretentious yet it’s an intricate masterclass displaying the level of sheer talent Kelly possesses. Using a collation of home videos to intertwine her story, based off true events, Tori emphasises and further iterates her vulnerability and emotional attachment to the project through endearing, and deeply personal memories which will have you cooing and crying.

Previously released singles, ‘Change your mind’ and ‘Language’ offered an accurate insight into the overall project which is quite the ascension in comparison to her debut project, ‘Unbreakable Smile’, regarding maturity and hard-hitting reality. Whilst the album is consistent its’s by no means monotonous with stories such as ‘Change Your Mind’ detailing her bumpy ride to marriage in one of her truest pop tracks taken from the project and ‘Language’ showcasing a punchier pop-rock infused embodiment of confidence.

Having worked alongside legend Jimmy Napes (Sam Smith, Mary J Blige and more) extensively on the project, along with one of the hit makers behind Ariana Grande’s number ones, Tayla Parx, Brit Award Winner James Bay and also the incredible Bruno Major, there’s no surprise the album packs a punch.

Highlights from ‘Inspired by True Events’ include the spine-tingling ‘2 Places’ and Tori’s touching ode to her late grandfather ‘Dada’ in ‘Your Words’. The hushed tribute possesses an angelic pre-chorus which transpires into an overwehlming chorus laced with dreamy falsetto’s. Kelly managed to transform her tragic loss and encapsulated her pain into a divine emodiment of the memories of her loved one.

The songstress has been destined for fame since childhood, a warming conversation between her younger self and her mother where she wanted to sing in her bathing suit, ‘I’m not embarrassed anymore’, was something so poignant in her childhood which happens to prevail in the explicit honesty and vulnerability of her third studio album.

Elsewhere on ‘Inspired By True Events’, Kelly confesses to everything from her bittersweet longing for the simplicity of childhood on the lush and luminous ‘Kid I Used to Know’ to the realisation of inner beauty being superior to artificial exteriors, which will eventually fade, on the upbeat ‘Pretty Fades’.

Entering the second half of the album, tracks ‘The Lie’ and ‘Actress’ are enjoyable yet border on the line of being forgettable and have the least replay appeal. They uphold a washy pop instrumental where sparkling harmonies and nostalgic influence are by no means bad just inferior to the elevated level of perfection in previous counterparts.

Tori Kelly ties the album together leaving a powerful impact concluding with a painfully honest piano ballad ‘Until I Think of You’ bleeding the lyrics ‘Some days I wake up wishing I hadn’t’, a beautifully narrated third person memoir deriving from the split of her parents on ‘Sorry Would Go A Long Way’ before finally finishing with ‘Before the dawn’ – A harp picked instrumental, interweaving soulful choruses and encouragement into an oxymoronic and mournful sounding yet uplifting message.

Inspired by true events shows why Tori Kelly was deserving of her Grammy wins and career achievements whilst showing sheer maturity, growth and pouring her real life experiences into a perfectly executed conceptual album showcasing her journey into adulthood.

In her Darkest days came the brightest light, ‘Inspired by True Events’ perfectly encapsulated raw emotion, pain and growth into a 16-track masterpiece which will make you smile and cry simultaneously.

Tori Kelly’s incredibly angelic, beautiful and emotive third studio album, ‘Inspired By True Events’, will be available across all major streaming platforms and to purchase at midnight.

Let us know your thoughts on the album over on Twitter @CelebMix

Written by Arun Mohammed

Journalist and music enthusiast who cares for everything showbiz. @arun_Mohammed on twitter or contact me via Email: [email protected]
Personal Blog: arunmohammed.com