Daniel Caesar’s debut album, Freudian, shows plenty of talent and soul

Sam Noonan, Graphic Design

Canadian R&B singer Daniel Caesar, born Ashton Simmonds, gained traction online with his first two EPs entitled Praise Break and Pilgrim’s Paradise. These releases let Caesar make a name for himself, and he released his first studio album, Freudian, on August 25th. While this album may have lost a bit of attention due to releases from the likes of Lil Uzi Vert and A$AP Mob the same night, Freudian tells of Caesar’s experiences with love, acceptance, forgiveness, and more.

Caesar’s sound is reminiscent of a mix of John Mayer and Frank Ocean, with very clear influences woven into his own personal style. Whether it’s through the many powerful harmonies and emotional choruses this project presents, the 22-year-old Caesar confirms his talent and ability to put out some truly memorable tracks.

The genre of R&B is usually heavily influenced by gospel music, and Freudian is no exception. Caesar’s gospel roots shine through in his passionate and powerful delivery, and backing vocals from Caesar’s backup choir Cadaro Tribe on tracks such as “Hold Me Down” add soul and heart to the sound of the album.

Throughout the album, Caesar falls in and out of love but still resides in the “honeymoon period” and views love in a positive light. “Loose” wouldn’t be out of place on a Frank Ocean project, with Caesar lazily singing about overcoming a toxic relationship. “Get You,” one of the most popular tracks on the album, features Kali Uchis. Uchis’ verse flows smoothly out of Caesar’s part, and the two work together as if it comes naturally. In fact, Freudian is chock-full of beautiful harmonies – Caesar and any one of the featured artist’s vocals meld wonderfully.

Freudian is a must-listen for anyone who enjoys R&B, gospel, or is looking for a laid-back and emotional project. Although the production gets a bit stale as it is all quite similar, the theme fits the album and Caesar’s vocals well. A debut album this good proves that Caesar is here to stay, and has much to offer in the future.