When she released her highly-praised debut album 'Things I've Never Said' back in 2017, Frances quickly became one of the most talked about new artists of that year. Her bold and captivating sound led many to compare her to the likes of Adele, and it wasn't long before the hype machine took over and she found herself as a promising talent on the new music horizon. But since that release, she almost completely vanished from our radar. Now she returns with her more low-key follow-up 'Wonder', a record that tries to renew her spirit and continue the appeal she mustered first time around.
From the very start, 'Wonder' sets itself up as a very different album. While her debut was all about pushing the boundaries and creating something truly awe-inspiring, 'Wonder' sees her rein in these ideals in exchange for something far lighter and humbling throughout. While it has this wonderfully sweet and seductive flow to it, it does have trouble showing off to the listener. While each song is masterfully produced and arranged, it never really looks to grab your ear and as a result, kind of swims by without piquing much interest or showing us the same Frances we first discovered in her infancy.
While its brief 25-minute runtime and four-year wait may indicate new music wasn't at the forefront of her mind between the two full-lengths, 'Wonder' tries its hardest to live up to its predecessor with only a glimmer of success. It is a fine and enjoyable listen, but not one you are likely to find yourself coming back to again and again.