It’s been three years since the world was introduced to Shawn Mendez on the social media app, Vine, where he drew in many viewers. At the age of 15, Mendez landed a spot on the Billboard Hot 100 with his first ever single, “Life of the Party” in 2014. In 2015, the singer gained even greater fame with the release of his debut album Handwritten. The record was met with great reviews for its minimalist productions and personal lyrics. Now at the age of 18, Mendezis ready to show the world even better material with his sophomore album Illuminate. With a bigger fan base than ever, Mendez is prepared to continue roaming the world of pop with a bunch of awesome upcoming hits.
The song “Mercy” is one of the first songs off the album and it is the most powerful single Mendes has put on this record. With boasts of passion, he begs to be set free from getting his heart broken. This song makes you want to pound your fist on the table and scream out the lyrics while you listen to his heavy vocals being shouted. Hearing this at his concert would be amazing!
Reaching out to many people and not aiming towards one type of person is something that is heavily promoted in the song “Understand.” Many listeners can agree that this song is the epitome of what it constantly feels like being a young adult. It’s normal to feel unsure of what you want for the future. Even adults can relate. Trying to figure out where you belong in this world can be difficult and second guessing yourself is normal for anyone, just like Mendes says in the song “Changing isn’t a bad thing.”
Sticking to light acoustics, Mendez breaks someone’s heart in “Honest,” but sure isn’t breaking any fans hearts with this quick beat jam. Sounding just like one of his major inspirations, Jason Mraz, he sure can swoon our hearts with his poetic vibe.
Mendes continues to show maturity in his sound with Ed Sheeran-esque single “Ruin.” After giving this a few listens, a fan can agree Sheeran would be jealous not to have a song like this. Mendez provides some of the best vocals of his career singing along with the hardcore guitar in this adult-pop ballad.
Mendez sure knows how to play an acoustic set without being boring; instead, he is passionate and original. Though he may not be at the levels of other similar artists like John Mayer, Sheeran or Justin Timberlake, he is getting there faster than others have when they were 18. Mendez is becoming one of the biggest faces in pop for this generation of millennials. By the time he reaches age 25, he’ll be dominating the world with poise and confidence of having several chart topping records under his belt. For now, enjoy this refreshing album and go see Shawn in a town near you in 2017 while he embarks on his Illuminate adventure!