Sam Smith's voice is quite simply incredible. The rich, soulful tone; the incredible range and warm yet piercing falsetto; the smooth control and silky riffs - it all amasses to a voice that melts over the listener. This EP could simply be Smith singing the alphabet on repeat and it would still be worth listening to.
Smith is also the voice of one of the biggest dance tracks of the year: Disclosure's Latch (a track included here in stunning, acoustic form). Can he break out to become a fully-fledged solo artist rather than just a featured voice?
The 'Nirvana EP' follows on from the electro style of Disclosure and Naughty Boy. Opening track Safe With Me features a skittering beat and plenty of vocal processing that detracts from Smith's performance. Nirvana, meanwhile, is more of a sultry R&B jam with a deep bassline and sexy guitar melodies. It's followed by a live performance of I've Told You Now, proving once again that Smith excels at singing ballads - although why previous release Lay Me Down wasn't also included is a mystery.
Overall, though, the quality of songwriting doesn't quite match the voice, the EP lacking a real standout hit (beyond Latch). As it stands, Smith is still dependent on partnering with top producers to find excellence. The potential, however, for a future album is huge.
Listen: The 'Nirvana EP' is available now.