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Review: Lorde Gets it Done on Melodrama

Pop’s queen of melancholy opens up her emotional palette.

Lorde/Melodrama/Universal

Lorde has always functioned as something of anti-hero within the pop scene. She can defeat any of her peers lyrically with a flip of her wrist that sends venomous shots from her poison pen.

Her voice has so much smoke that when she sings the fire can’t help but seep out even on sulkier ballads.

lordeShe’s positioned well for some have her cake and eat it too action. Lorde can be artistically relevant and a commercial fireball.

The only problem is that at times Melodrama suffers under the weight of its own ambition. Let’s put that to the side for a moment.

Melodrama is home to multiple moments that meet at raise the creative bar that was set for her by her.

“The Louvre” rumbles speakers with the naiveté of a girl in love.  That perspective dips in and out as cynicism piles on the back of the first verse’s ode to someone’s sweetheart.

Musically, its foundation is so mid-80’s alt-pop that it would have scored an epic scene in a John Hughes movie.

Swimming under her coos and stick-and-move sarcasm and the waves of synth pads are knocking drums that at certain points feel almost industrial in their strength.

As the album’s highlight, “The Louvre” stands for everything that is wonderful about Lorde’s contribution to pop music.

As mentioned there are moments that fail to fulfill their potential. For Melodrama Lorde opened up her writing circle to include established hitmakers.

There are a few moments that scream ‘play my ass on the radio.’ The contradiction in it all is that if any of these tracks were presented by her competitors, they would be hailed as artistic triumphs.

The real is that even when Lorde shoots at the bank vault to get some coin, she leaves her fingerprints behind.

While no perfect, Melodrama is a damn good album that just happens to be 100-percent transparent.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

Stream: Lorde Melodrama

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