Travel Back in time with ‘Friends’22 year old expresses his love and heartache
“Friends” brings back that 80s feel, taking anyone back in time while allowing that modern R&B rhythm to flow from the powerful lyrics. Rating: B+ Photo Courtesy of AXS
Strongly inspired by his favorite childhood film and constantly being surrounded by music in church, Omar Apollo’s style of music has evolved since his Camp Rock days. While he used to record Disney covers to post on Youtube, Apollo’s new album “Friends,” reflects his newfound interest in writing about his past love story in a new uplifting way.
Aspiring to be an artist since he was around 12 years old, Omar Velasco, better known as Apollo, grew up in Indiana with his family in an American-Mexican household. He received his first guitar from his uncle and began his career by posting covers on Youtube. Apollo recorded his first songs in high school, and by the year 2015, he had fully committed his life to making music. In 2017, his stardom sparked with the release of his single “Ugotme” and even more so after the release of his EP, “Stereo.”
The first song,“Ashamed,” introduces a retro vibe with the use of techno sounds and a fusion of R&B lyrics. Apollo sings, “Are, are you ashamed?/ What are we supposed to do with our hearts?” as he tells the story of how his lover is ashamed to be with him and hides their relationship. To make the track sound more upbeat and appealing, Apollo adds electric chords in the background, giving his listeners that retro 80s feeling.
Showcasing his vulnerability, Apollo paints the picture of heartache while keeping that sanguine tune throughout all the songs. For example, on “So Good,” Apollo serenades his listeners with, ”I’m losing all control/ So go and break my heart.” This pattern of sorrow and confusion shows Apollo’s emotions, yet he still manages to sound cheerful through his lyrics.
With this being Apollo’s second large production, he continues to show growth and maturity with his musical choice. After all, getting to experience his personality through his songs have really impacted a new generation of R&B.
Although “Friends,” is only a seven track album, each song will make fans feel the artist’s emotions. From electric to acoustic, Apollo embraces his softer side through this unique take on R&B.