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Confident (album)

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Confident is the fifth studio album by American singer and songwriter Demi Lovato. It was released on October 16, 2015, by Safehouse, Hollywood and Island Records. "Cool for the Summer" was released as the album's lead single on July 1, 2015 and has so far peaked at number 11 on the US Billboard Hot 100 . The album's second single, "Confident", premiered on September 18, 2015, and have peaked at number 31 on the Hot 100. The album features guest appearances from Australian rapper Iggy Azalea and American rapper Sirah. Lovato co-wrote most of the songs on the album, and worked with writers and producers such as Max Martin, Ryan Tedder, Steve Mac, Rami and Stargate. Following its release, the album debuted at number one in Canada while reaching the top 10 in nine other countries, including United Kingdom, and United States.

Background and recordingEdit

On December 18, 2013, Lovato confirmed that she was working on her fifth album, stating "The sound just evolves into everything that I've been and everything that I want to become." She also said, "I've never been so sure of myself as an artist when it comes down to confidence, but not only personal things, but exactly what I want my sound to be and what I know I'm capable of and this album will give me the opportunity to show people what I can really do." In October 2014, Lovato's manager confirmed to Billboard that the singer had "done some songs, but certainly the majority of it will kick off next year", following the Demi World Tour.

In February 2015, Lovato teased the album with a number of posts via Twitter, writing: "I’ve never been more confident in my sound. Never been so sure of who I am as an artist. Never felt this hungry and driven." She further described the album as "very authentic to who I am".

In June 2015, Lovato confirmed that she had been in the studio almost every day, and would be releasing new music "very soon". She revealed to MTV News: "This time around, I was able to explore different sounds, and hone in on something that I’m really proud of." She also expressed wishes to work with Aussie rapper Iggy Azalea on the album. Discussing the album's direction, Lovato told Ryan Seacrest that "I'm no longer serious", stating: "I'm done with the sob stories. New chapter, new life, new album, new single — this is a completely new Demi." She also revealed that it would feature "a lot of provocative songs".

Release Edit

Confident is the singer's first album to be released in part under the newly formed Safehouse Records, a partnership between Lovato, her manager Phil McIntyre, and Nick Jonas, as a joint venture with Island Records. Lovato stated: "I've worked closely with both Nick and Phil for years and we share the same point of view when it comes to making music. It's incredibly exciting to be part of this new company where I'm in control of all aspects of my career." Lovato debuted the album's artwork, title and track list on August 26, 2015 via social media. The album's thirteen song titles were revealed in a series of Twitter posts by Lovato's celebrity friends, including Kim Kardashian, Nick Jonas, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Perri, Ryan Seacrest, Pete Wentz, Bea Miller and Iggy Azalea. This was followed by Lovato writing: "You ready for this? (sic) New album October 2015 #Confident." The cover art for Confident features a "bronzed" Lovato posing in black underwear and top; the image was described as "sultry" by The Huffington Post and "stunningly sexy" by Us Weekly

SinglesEdit

"Cool for the Summer" was serviced as the lead single from the record on July 1, 2015, and has since peaked at number 11 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. The song went top 10 in the UK, New Zealand, Scotland and Czech Republic and top 20 in Canada, Ireland and Australia. The title track, "Confident", was released as the second single on September 18, 2015.

Promotional singles Edit

"Stone Cold" was released as the first and only promotional single from the album on October 9, 2015.

PromotionEdit

On September 29, 2015, Lovato sent her fans on a scavenger hunt. Lovato announced that she was hiding special boxes, each on a different location. Each box contained a preview of a song from the album. The first two boxes were found that same day in New York City, the first box contained a snippet of "Stone Cold" while the second contained a snippet of "Old Ways". Lovato performed "Stone Cold" in its entirety later that same day at the Highland Ballroom in New York. On October 17, 2015, Lovato performed a "Cool for the Summer" and "Confident" medley, and "Stone Cold" on Saturday Night Live during the series' forty-first season. On October 22, 2015, Lovato released the music video for the R&B-influenced "Waitin for You" featuring Sirah. Lovato and Nick Jonas announced that they would go on a co-headlining tour, the Future Now Tour, on the Elvis Duran and the Morning Show on October 26, 2015.

Critical receptionEdit

Upon its release, Confident received generally favorable reviews from music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a "weighted average" rating out of 100 from selected independent ratings and reviews from mainstream critics, the album received a Metascore of 74, indicating "generally favorable reviews" from 9 critics. Awarding the album four stars at AllMusic, Stephen Thomas Erlewine writing, "the cumulative result is a messy, colorful modern pop record that is greater than the sum of its parts." Annie Zaleski from The A.V. Club gave the album a B+, saying, "Confident is an impressive album by a pop star who knows what she wants—and also knows exactly how to get there." The Guardian gave a mixed review of the album, saying, "Only a certain sheen that turns her vocals into a generic hybrid of Sia and Kelly Clarkson stops Confident from being one of the pop albums of 2015." Mike Wass from Idolator also gave a mixed review, saying, "There's no right or wrong approach, but if you're going to relaunch as an irreverent pop siren like Teenage Dream-era Katy Perry, you better have an album full of surefire hits to back it up. And Confident is lacking in that department." Nick Levine gave the album 3 out of 5 stars, saying, "It's powerful stuff, especially from a singer who has bravely spoken out about her past struggles with depression, drug and alcohol abuse and an eating disorder, but ultimately Confident feels a bit relentless."

Glenn Gamboa from Newsday gave a more positive review, saying, "On Confident, Lovato's swaggering search for self is remarkably revealing, as she tackles everything from sexual experimentation to mental health issues to her relationship with her estranged father." Writing for Billboard, Maura Johnston gave the album 4.5 out of 5 stars, saying, "Her willingness to own every step and misstep, and to show her audience how the rough times helped her become the woman she is, makes Confident a surprisingly compelling listen." Tim Stack from Entertainment Weekly gave the album a B+, saying, "Over 11 tracks Lovato’s energy is unwavering, sometimes to a fault. So it’s a welcome relief that she takes a moment to reveal a softer side on the gospel-tinged ballad "Father," a tear-jerking tribute to her estranged late dad." Richard Godwin from London Evening Standard gave the album a negative review, saying, "She’s more at home on the ballads such as Lionheart, while Kingdom Come, an atmospheric prowl featuring Iggy Azalea, all moody changes and trap beats, is a welcome respite from a personality record weirdly lacking in personality. Patrick Ryan from USA Today gave the album 2.5 out of 4 stars, saying, "Confident is overall an assured step forward for Lovato, who should only hone her sound and style by the time album No. 6 rolls around."

Commercial performanceEdit

The album debuted number 2 on the US Billboard 200, with first-week sales of 98,000 units (77,000 in pure album sales), behind Pentatonix's self-titled album. In the United Kingdom, the album debuted at number 6 on the UK Albums Chart, becoming her highest-charting album in the country thus far.

Track listingEdit

  1. Confident
  2. Cool for the Summer
  3. Old Ways
  4. For You
  5. Stone Cold
  6. Kingdom Come (Feat. Iggy Azalea)
  7. Waitin For You (Feat Sirah)
  8. Wildfire
  9. Lionheart
  10. Yes
  11. Father

Deluxe Edition

12. Stars

13. Mr. Hughes

14. Cool for the Summer (Jump Smokers Remix)

15. Cool for the Summer (Suraci Remix)

Release historyEdit

Both digital and standard copies of Confident were released worldwide on October 16, 2015 by Safehouse, Hollywood, and Island Records

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