Tuesday, October 1, 2013
Did you hear how Lorde is only 16? ... ..... .... of course you did cause its being rammed down everyone's throat every time we hear about her. Obviously its a huge achievement what she has done in the small amount of time Lorde, the alias of Auckland singer songwriter Ella Yelich-O'Connor has been in existence but for this review I'm going to stay away from the fact shes 16 cause its not that important.
Before I get into what I think of the album I must say I'm unsure of what Lorde is? is she a simple pop star produced by a big record label to sell a bunch of records and then be discarded a few years later? or is she a legitimate musician that we could be seeing for a long time to come? In all honesty I don't actually think shes either of those two cause I always get a vibe that the big business are trying to push her away from her being a bubble gum pop star and instead be this bedroom songwriter who is anti mainstream. Kind of like if a small indie band released a single and suddenly had number a 1 song and millions of fans. In the end though I have come to the conclusion that at this stage I think her image is still a little unclear but we'll probably see it in the coming months and whether its believable will be interesting to see.
The album starts with one of the big tracks from before this was released in Tennis Court and without a doubt this is one of the best on this album. It's minimal beat with a gloomy feel isn't at all adventurous but its unnecessary on this track. Instead displaying the reason why anyone listening to this in Lorde's voice and the that stay in line with where Ella is at this stage in her life. 400 Lux continues to move in the same direction as the album opener a simple pop song with a a solid beat backing it. Moving on to Royals the other elite level song on this album, a smash hit everywhere its certainly a track you can build a strong album off of. There's very little to be said about this song because its massive and everyone's probably heard it way too many times already.
Now we get to where this album has its first real problems because its so god damn stale and even worse safe. If there was ever an argument that they rushed this album out off the back of the EP and singles success it is evident in the rest of this album. The production is so safe it borders on boring, I don't know if this was her preference in terms on music but someone needs to invest in a producer that wants to take a risk. It makes the songs so samey and I get a feeling during the back half of this album that its almost pointless to listen to. Team almost brings this back to where we were early in the album but its surrounded by album filler in tracks Glory and Gore, Buzzcut Season and Still Sane.
A World Alone isn't a bad album closer although at this point my care factor for the rest of this album is extremely low. Being a new artist at the top of the world is a good reason to get more music out there as soon as possible, but if its not going to be at the same level or even close then don't bother, it only gives strength to those that second guess her. Would it be wrong for her to go away and truly find out who she is as an artist? come back with a real album not something that has such massive highs and then so much filler that doesn't at all do this justice.
This isn't at the end of the day a bad album, but it could be so much better with a little more time and perhaps an attempt to not have the songs so similar throughout. Lyrically its nice throughout and incredibly believable which can always be something I don't always get with pop music. While the 2nd half was quite stale there were still strong moments that combined with the strong trio at the beginning of this album at the very least gives a decent debut.