New Music Round Up 9/3/17

Happy Sunday everyone! To celebrate the fact that we don’t have to go to school and work tomorrow, I thought I’d share some of my favorite tracks right now because what’s Labor Day weekend without a little music right?

Anyway, this roundup is wayyy behind schedule. I meant to post a roundup back in late July, and then another one in August, but I’ve been so swamped that I haven’t had the time. With that being said, a lot of these songs aren’t necessarily new, but they are fairly recent or just new to me.

Introductions aside, let the round up begin.

1. “Young Dumb and Broke”-Khalid

If you haven’t heard of Khalid by now, you’re probably living under a rock. Don’t worry though, I just crawled from under a rock too. Khalid, a 19 year old singer from Texas, is all the rage right now. My first encounter with his music was his single “Location.” My initial impressions of Khalid were that he’s very talented and mature, but somehow still youthful. His youth is present in his teen anthem “Young Dumb and Broke.” There really isn’t much to the track. It’s easy listening to the core, not that easy listening is bad or anything. The track is carefree in nature, and it’s relatable. I mean I’m young, sometimes I’m dumb, and I’m definitely broke. I like what Khalid is doing right now. I hope he keeps it up.

2. “Love Galore”-SZA ft. Travis Scott

 

“Love Galore” is a prime example of how overdue this round up is. I listened to this song throughout the entire summer basically. SZA (pronounced Sizzah) is an up and coming R&B act. A lot of people are saying SZA’s music is reminiscent of Erykah Badu’s alternative style of R&B. Like I said earlier, I grooved to this track all summer. SZA’s voice is so melodic, the production is organic, and Travis Scott complements her sound very well in a less produced vocal performance. I like this different approach to R&B. Like Khalid, I’m interested  in seeing what SZA does in the future.

3. “Homemade Dynamite” Lorde

Lorde strikes again. “Homemade Dynamite” has been out since June when Lorde released her latest album Melodrama , but it has only recently gained traction for me. This song is such a bop. It’s so infectious, sonically pleasing, and well written. Lorde’s personality shines through and that really puts this song over the top for me. Long live Lorde. (P.S. The original version of “Homemade Dynamite” isn’t linked. The video above is a cool rendition Lorde did of the song. It’s worth watching.)

4. “XO TOUR Llif3”-Lil Uzi Vert

Rap music is heading into a new direction. In a lot of ways, the music we consider “rap” today isn’t rap at all, at least not traditionally. The rise of artists like Migos and Lil Uzi Vert showcase rap in a trap spotlight, meaning auto-toned vocals and big pop-influenced beats.  “XO Tour Life” is probably Lil Uzi Vert’s biggest hit as a solo act, and it is not a rap song. Does it have trap influences or rap influences? Yeah, but “XO Tour Life” is basically a pop song. This isn’t a bad thing, as it only adds to Uzi’s cross over appeal. Drake did this with tracks like “Passionfruit,” “One Dance,” and “Hotline Bling.” By creating a pop song with hip hop influences, Uzi doesn’t alienate any one group. His music, while ambiguous, is accessible, and  super catchy on top of all of that. “XO Tour Life” is a banger, but if you listen closely, it’s actually a pretty sad song lyrically. I’m a fan of it. I think Uzi’s approach to hip hop is cool. His eclectic taste shines through his own music which is probably why he’s so exciting to the public right now. Would I consider Uzi a rapper? This concept, I’m still debating.

5. “1-800-273-8255 ” Logic ft. Alessia Cara and Khalid

I’m an avid Spotify user, and I’d be lying to you if I said I didn’t discover songs from hearing ads over and over again. This track by Logic was on one of those ads I heard constantly. I thought it was pretty catchy, but I didn’t really listen to the lyrics. I forgot about the track until last week after I saw it performed on the VMAs. It’s a pretty “woke”( I can’t believe I just said that)  track if you will. I love a good socially conscious song every now and then. Logic brought Alessia Cara and ya boy Khalid along for the ride. All three artists give very soulful performances, resulting in a powerful, clever, and sensitive track that aims at preventing suicide.

6. “Feels”-Calvin Harris ft. Pharell, Katy Perry, and Big Sean

I like the direction Calvin Harris is going in. His music has more groove than ever before, and I love a good groove. “Feels” is just a fun track, weaved with Caribbean influences and light vocals. In my opinion, Katy Perry’s performance against the funky production is the best part of the song. The chorus is airy and infectious, and those elements are essential for a great pop song.

Well, that’s it for this round up. Sorry for the long delay! Hopefully you were able to discover or revisit some cool music! Have a great rest of your long weekend.

Couturely Sound ❤

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All Denim Everything

It’s crazy to think that August is nearing its end. School has been in session for a couple of weeks now, and I’m finally getting back into a routine-sort of. I’ve been so busy, which is good and bad. I like to be occupied, but sometimes I feel as if there isn’t enough time in the day. I’m hoping things will slow down soon, but if not, I’ll just have to speed up.

The end of August does not only mark the (almost) end of summer, but it also marks the end of denim month in the fashion world. August is typically when most magazines release their “denim issues,” and there is something about blue jeans that reminds me of the start of the school year. Last July, I compiled various denim looks together in one post to provide some inspiration for August, but this year I wore some denim looks of my own.

All throughout August, I took snaps of my denim looks whenever I could. All of my looks are down below, so let’s get started.

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My denim jeggings from American Eagle are becoming a staple for me. They are super versatile and comfortable, which is an added plus.

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With my jeans, I wore my purple tie-dye adidas, and my green flowy blouse. Though simple, I found the look to be pretty stylish.

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I built this look around my white frilly blouse from Charlotte Russe. I got the blouse off the clearance rack, so it was quite the steal. I love the shape of this blouse because it created layers in my outfit. Since my top had a flare, I thought it would look super cute with some denim shorts. For extra contrast, I wore my dark brown sandals. I loved how flirty, girly, and summery this look was.

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Nothing celebrates denim month more than a denim romper. I love this romper because it’s cute and playful. I wanted to add some color to my outfit, and I get chilly throughout the day, so I layered my romper with a pink flannel. To complement the pink and the navy blue tones, I wore my beige sandals from American Eagle. I was really happy with how this outfit turned out.

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The day that this picture was taken I had to work. At JCPenney, we are required to wear a red top and denim bottoms on the weekends. I get pretty bored with this combination, so I try my best to add some flare to my uniform. On this particular day, I added my black vest and my black, studded Sam Edelman shoes that my god mom got for me a couple years ago( shout out to Brandi). I stayed within dress code, but I also showcased  my personality. It was a win-win.

imageBoyfriend jeans are my favorite! I’ve been wearing them for a few years now, and I love wearing them with sneakers or slip on shoes like my Sperrys. Boyfriend jeans give off such a cool and laid back vibe, but they are still really stylish. My jeans and my red top are all from American Eagle-go figure( if you haven’t  realized it yet, AE is my favorite store). I wanted to accessorize a little bit so I wore my simple, silver necklace. On this day, I felt comfortable and cool.

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The boot cut jean is not only perfect with a nice pair of boots, but really any shoe with a lift. I typically save my boot cut jeans for fall, but I thought it would be fun to cheat and wear them a little earlier. With my jeans, I wore my white cami from Charlotte Russe with a green bomber from AE. As for shoes, I wore my brown sandals. I loved the earthy color scheme of this outfit. Over the years, I’ve favored neutral color schemes because they never fail me.

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I took this picture today. I didn’t have time to take a full body photo because, ya know, life, but I was happy I managed to get this shot. I had to work today, so the red and the denim came back out. Wanting to spice up my uniform, I didn’t go with the traditional denim jeans, opting instead for a jean skirt. I love jean skirts. They are so playful, and I remember wearing them a lot as a little kid. Who else remembers skorts? I used to wear denim skorts all the time too hahaha. I wore a knit vest with my skirt and red top to add some dimension.  I complemented my outfit with my Sperrys.

I love denim because it’s classic and simple. A lot of people love their sweats, but I think a great pair of jeans are just as comfortable. Denim is timeless, having remained cool across several decades. I’m glad the fashion world takes a month to celebrate it.

It was fun compiling this denim lookbook for you! Fall is coming soon, so enjoy the warm weather while it lasts!

Have a great rest of your August.

Couturely Sound ❤

 

Last First Day of School

Hey everyone! I hope your weekend has gone well and you’re enjoying this last month of summer. I’m holding on to every second of it.

I haven’t updated my blog in a while, and for that I apologize. I’ve been swamped with working, practice, and all of life’s other responsibilities.

Inspiration has also evaded me. It can be challenging to come up with a topic to write about, and it was hard to share outfits when my summer wardrobe consisted mainly of workout clothes or work clothes. Super cute right? Not really.  I was sure that no one cared to see me in that attire.

With school fast approaching, I’ve managed to kind of get my life together-mostly because I have to. Hopefully, I’ll get back on track with posting blogs too because I really missed it.

My senior year of high school starts on Tuesday and I couldn’t be more excited. Not for the school part, but the last year part. It’s also kind of bittersweet because time has gone by so fast, and I’ll have to grow up pretty soon. I always tell my friends and family that I don’t necessarily want to be an adult, but I definitely want to be out of high school. Maybe I’ll find a way to maintain that balance.

The first day of school was always exciting for me growing up. There was something about meeting new teachers and seeing who was in my classes that made me eager to start. I’m going to get superficial here, but the first day is also the day to make first impressions after a long summer of not seeing anyone. Everyone always seems to dress their best those first couple weeks of school. Tuesday will be my last “first day of school” in the traditional sense. It will be my last time participating in the annual dress to impress day.

To celebrate, I thought I’d share a possible first day of school outfit that I threw together.

First, I had to get out the backpack.

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I wanted to go with a simple approach, so I put on some jeans and a white blouse.

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To stay in the spirit of summer, I added a pop of color to my outfit with my purple tie-dye adidas.

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It’s been a while since I’ve held my backpack, and let’s just say I didn’t necessarily miss carrying it everyday.

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My outfit was pretty simple, but that’s how I like it. Some of the boldest statements are made when you say nothing at all; the same can be said about fashion.

I’m still not sure what I’ll wear on Tuesday, but whatever it is, I’ll wear because I want to wear it. My advice to everyone starting school soon is to be yourself. High school doesn’t last forever, so don’t waste your time trying to impress people you are around for a small portion of your life at the expense of your own happiness. Make yourself happy because you have to live with yourself for the rest of your life.

Good luck to everyone starting school soon! I wish you all the best for this new year, and hope that you enjoy these last days of summer!

Couturely Sound ❤

 

Real Talk:Your Accomplishments Won’t Make You Happy Forever

When I started my blog over a a year ago, I wanted it to be focused on topics exclusively related to fashion or pop culture. However, as of late, I’ve decided that my blog should be a platform for me to discuss anything and that I shouldn’t limit myself. Besides, I have too many things weighing on my mind all of the time, and to not discuss them or potentially help someone else by sharing them would be a travesty.

With all of that being said, I want to introduce a new series on my blog called “Real Talk.” “Real Talk” will essentially be a series of blog posts where I delve into or observe anything I’ve recently discovered about life or society. Don’t worry though; Couturely Sound is still a fashion and pop culture blog, and I hope to keep it that way, but every now and then, anticipate a post in which I share some of the issues that fail to evade my mind.

Today’s “Real Talk” is all about accomplishments and how they relate to our happiness. I think our society puts so much emphasis on accomplishments, whether it be monetarily, academically, or athletically. We always feel as if our lives could be better, so we set goals, and we work towards these goals so that we can get to wherever it is we want to be. I’m all for setting goals, and I look at my personal accomplishments with great pride-I think everyone should- but I’m here to tell you that your accomplishments will not keep you happy forever even if they are excellent.

I don’t participate in gymnastics, and I never have, but I’ve always been a fan of the sport. What gymnasts can do with their bodies absolutely astounds me, and whenever the Olympics comes on, gymnastics is always my favorite sport to watch. One of my favorite gymnasts to compete is Shawn Johnson.  Shawn Johnson competed at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, where she took home 4 medals including a gold medal on the balance beam. After her Olympic run, she also went on to win Dancing With the Stars, becoming the youngest competitor to ever do so.

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Anyway, last summer I saw a video she was in that was produced by I Am Second, a Christian organization that’s main focus is about living second and being selfless.

The video is linked above, but I realize some people may not have time to watch it, so I’ll provide a brief summary. Shawn Johnson was the “it” girl in gymnastics leading up to the 2008 Olympics. Up until that point, she had won virtually every competition, so the media predicted that she would get all gold medals at the games, including the coveted gold medal in the all-around competition. Johnson, age 16 at that point, had worked her entire life for the all-around gold medal, but she came up a little short. Her teammate and friend Nastia Liukin had been neck in neck with her in competitions for the entire year, but on the day of the all-around, Liukin won the gold medal, while Johnson took silver. Johnson went on to take silver in the team and floor competitions before finally earning a well deserved gold medal with a beautiful performance on beam. Despite, all that she had accomplished, Johnson still felt like a failure-she didn’t take the gold medal in the all around and didn’t live up to everyone’s expectations. Even after winning the gold medal on beam, she still felt unhappy, like none of it really mattered in the first place.

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Johnson wanted redemption. After tearing her ACL in a ski accident in 2010, she decided to make a comeback for London 2012. The only difference was that she was not 16 anymore. She became obsessed with training, people were commenting on her body, and she was pressured by multiple endorsements. She hit rock bottom, until she was in the gym one day and God gave her the courage to leave the sport she had done for her entire life. The lessons she had learned was that no amount of gold medals will make you happy-after all she had won gold in Beijing and it was nice at first,  but she still felt like a failure in the years to come. She also learned that true happiness is found in God and family, and no accomplishment is worth sacrificing your well being over.

I was really inspired by this clip, but at the time, I don’t think I related to it as much as I do now. I am a go getter, so I set a lot of goals for myself. For a long time, I was convinced that if I reached all of  my goals I would be happy, but this really isn’t the case. I had a lot of moments like that this past year. I would reach a goal, feel great about it for a day or so, and then go back to feeling kind of empty again, as if I was somehow still under performing in life or missing something. I had a lot of “what now?” moments . Accomplishments are a temporary high that we can look back on, but never fully experience again.

Whenever someone of great influence with a bunch of accomplishments goes off the rails, or in extreme cases, takes their life, we are often confused. We think “how could someone who has everything be so sad or troubled?” The answer is that whatever they achieved isn’t keeping them happy anymore, and maybe it never did. I mean look at Michael Phelps. He became the most decorated Olympian in 2012, but spiraled into alcoholism before making his run for the 2016 Olympics in Rio, where he also dominated. To me, he seems to be in a much better place now, having found an identity outside of all the swimming and medals with his growing family.

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Tom Brady, even after winning 5 Super Bowls, still isn’t finished playing football as he approaches his 40th birthday. Many might wonder what drives him. Is it his winning spirit? The chip on his shoulder? His love for the game? I think it could be all of those things, but another part of me thinks he’s chasing that temporary high. After all, the feeling of winning a Super Bowl fades after so many years. He gave an interview with 60 Minutes after the Patriots had won their third championship in three years. In the interview, Brady said, “Why do I have three Super Bowl rings and still think there is something greater out there for me?” Having reached the pinnacle of athletic achievement he still thought, “There’s got to be more than this.”

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Basketball GOAT, Michael Jordan, has echoed similar sentiment. Part of the reason he kept retiring and then coming back to basketball was because of his need to compete and win. When he really couldn’t play anymore, he did what he could to still get that competitive high, like golfing or opening up a camp where he charged middle aged men a pretty penny to get schooled by him. He has stated before that he has yet to find something that makes him tick like basketball did, and he is still looking. Jordan has won 6 rings, he’s a billionaire, he’s a widely respected athlete, and yet he still feels a void.

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Here’s what I’ve learned:The only things that will truly fulfill you are the memories you create, your family, friends, and God.

Sure, you can get straight A’s in school and ace all of your exams, but is that temporary high worth loosing sleep over or friendships? Memories?

You might work your way up in a job and become a CEO, but is that prestigious position worth missing your kids’ soccer games over? Or your marriage?

My point is-don’t sacrifice your health, well being, experiences, or relationships for that temporary high because unlike the aforementioned things, it will not keep you happy forever. Set goals for yourself and reach for the stars, but always remember that whatever you achieve is not the end all be all, and it is definitely not what defines you or your purpose in life.

Stay golden my friends,

Couturely Sound ❤

New Music Roundup 7/8/17

 

Happy Saturday! This week was pretty long and stressful. I’m so happy I conquered this week and all of its challenges. Maybe your week had challenges as well, so let’s celebrate the weekend with some music!

Here are 7 new tracks that I’m currently enjoying:

1. Lorde-“Perfect Places”

I recently reviewed Lorde’s new album Melodrama, and “Perfect Places” was one of the standouts. Its explosive chorus and honest lyrics have been playing in my head on repeat.

2. Paramore-Drake “Passionfruit” Cover

 

This cover manages to incorporate two things I love: Paramore and Drake’s song “Passionfruit,”which made my round up a couple of months ago. Whenever artist make the rounds and go to the bbc live lounge, I always get pretty excited because they always perform a cover. I would have never expected Paramore to cover a Drake song, but then again their sound has evolved quite a bit. I was so pleased by this unlikely cover.

3. Bryson Tiller- “Sorry Not Sorry”

Sometimes I love really biting lyrics that cut deep and aren’t even remotely nice. I think songs that have these types of lyrics are really honest. Such is the case with Tiller’s “Sorry Not Sorry.” The greatness doesn’t stop with his words though-the beat is also pretty sick. I know this song is a year old, but it’s new to me, so that’s why it’s on this list.

4. Childish Gambino-“Redbone”

I remember hearing “3005” a couple years ago, and it was a song that I enjoyed listening to. When I first heard “Redbone,” I never would have thought that the artist performing it was the same man behind “3005”-Childish Gambino. “Redbone” is a smooth jam, with raspy vocals and a throwback feel. I love jamming out to this track on car rides or when I’m just chilling.

5. Lorde-“Supercut”

Another track from Lorde’s Melodrama has made this list. “Supercut” is such a bop. The production is so full and polished. Lorde’s vocals are emotive, and the lyrics are-you guessed it-honest. I think Lorde is great for pop music. “Supercut” has all the makings of a great pop song, but it is so much smarter than most pop we hear today. It somehow manages to make you want to dance but also cry. Keep doing what you’re doing Lorde.

6. Coldplay- ” A L I E N S”

It’s funny because Coldplay are my favorite band, and probably artist, but they have never made my new music roundup up until this point. This is probably because they haven’t released new music since I started this series. “Aliens” is a brilliant track, not only sonically, but thematically. The music is urgent, spacy electronic sounds are weaved throughout, and Coldplay even get a little experimental with the phrasing and vocal delivery. One of the reasons I love Coldplay so much is because they are so worldy. “Aliens” outlines the story of aliens fleeing their home planet and then wanting to return home. It seems pretty simple but it’s actually a metaphor for the ongoing refugee crisis-like the aliens Coldplay describes, refugees have been forced out of their mother countries. Not only is aliens socially conscious, but it’s also pleasing to the ear. Brian Eno co-wrote and co-produced the track. He was one of the architects behind Coldplay’s acclaimed album Viva La Vida.  I hope he works with Coldplay more in the future. This song is evidence that Eno and Coldplay truly bring out the best in each other.

7. Paramore-“Forgiveness”

The last track on this round up is “Forgiveness” by Paramore. “Forgiveness” is featured on their new album After Laughter. I was initially lukewarm to this track, but I’ve been listening to After Laughter a lot lately, and it has really grown on me. The track is a heartbreaker-but it’s honest( if you couldn’t tell already, I like my music honest). Due to the new developments going on within the band, the song also has so much more context than it had before. Hayley Williams’s vocals shine, the guitars are sensitive, and the backing vocals add a fullness and vulnerability that I didn’t detect until now. It also gives off major 80s vibes, which is always a good thing. This song has been, and probably will remain,on repeat for a long time.

 

That’s it for this round up! Have a good weekend!

Couturely Sound ❤️

Red, White, and Blue

This summer is flying by. I can’t believe it’s already July! Before I know it, I’ll be back in school.

One of my main goals this summer was to stay productive. So far, I think I’ve managed to do so. I just got a new job, and for the past couple of days I’ve been training. To all of you out there who think retail is easy, it’s not. My job will be a new challenge for me, but I’m so happy that it’s keeping me busy!

Due to the 4th of July promotion going on at the store, we were told that we could wear any red, white, and blue combination for the next few days ( if only the dress code were always that loose).

I could’ve just worn a basic red shirt with some jeans, but I wanted to play with my outfit a bit more. What I wore today wasn’t too complex, but I felt that it was still cute, functional, and festive.

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I wore a white( well, it’s more cream)camisole blouse with a bright red work shirt. I really like the cami because it has a corset in the back (which I’ll show another time) and it’s very frilly and girly.

The weather outside was warm, but I knew I was bound to get cold being indoors for a large fraction of the day, so that’s why I opted for a quarter sleeve layer.

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We were allowed to wear jeans today, so I definitely capitalized off of that! My light denim jeggings from American Eagle are so comfortable, and they are becoming such a staple for me. I can wear them in so many different ways. For today, they were the blue that went with my red and white.

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My dad got me on Sperrys about five years ago, and since then I haven’t been able to quit them. I got this pair a few months ago, and they are really comfortable-perfect for standing on your feet all day. They’re also pretty cute too. I like the contrast they create with the rest of my outfit.

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I don’t dabble in makeup much, but when I do, I keep it light like I did today.

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I also kept my accessories minimal, opting for my red studs and pearl earrings with my simple silver necklace. On the rings, the words “faith” and “joy” are engraved-they acted as simple reminders to get me through the day. I threw my hair into a ponytail to get it out of the way, and my look was complete! I felt festive, stylish, and ready for work!

I’m so excited for all of the opportunities and experiences that will come my way in the next year. I can’t wait to share them!

Happy 4th!

Couturely Sound ❤

 

Lorde-“Melodrama” Album Review

So many artists dream of having a number one song on the Billboard Hot 100. To reach this achievement, an artist might make sure their song has the best hook, catchiest melodies, and coolest video. All of these components sound like the makings of a great hit right? Wrong, just ask Lorde.

 

Back in 2013, New Zealand native Lorde burst on to the scene with her smash hit “Royals” at the tender age of sixteen. The single quickly rose to number one and stayed there for quite some time. The success of “Royals” is interesting. While it had a catchy hook, it featured, at that point, a relatively unknown artist and, it did not have a glamorous video. What I find the most funny about “Royals” is that it rose to the number one spot on Billboard by, for lack of a better word, roasting numbers 2-100. “Royals” is an extremely clever song, and I’m not sure a lot of top 40 listeners ever realized this, myself included( until I did my research). The song is critical of excess and celebrity culture, so while it sounded great to the ear, it also had deeper meaning.

I was never a big fan of “Royals” when it first came out. I found it annoying, and I thought Lorde was kind of strange and stuck up.  I think at this point I misunderstood her. It wasn’t until I heard her next single, “Team,” that I began to look into Lorde more. From there, I delved into her debut album Pure Heroine, and now I can say that not only is it one of the best debut albums I have ever heard, but it is also one of my favorite albums ever. Pure Heroine was a masterpiece, and listening to it made me realize that I actually understood Lorde quite a bit. The album had excellent social commentary, honesty, and just enough teenage angst( remember, Lorde was 16 when she wrote it), but it was also so smart and mature. In the following years, I always thought “How is Lorde ever going to top this. What will she do next?” She had set the bar so high.

Well, now its 2017, and Lorde is back with her new album Melodrama. I had high hopes for this album. Let’s see what I thought of it in my track by track review.

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1. “Green Light”

“Green Light”, the first single, was a great way for Lorde to kick start her new era. I  liked the song from the start because it’s such a bop. The beginning is a bit slow for me, but soon the groovy piano takes over, and from there “Green Light” shines. As far as lyrics go, I really like the ones in this song. We all know what it’s like to wait for the green light-literally and figuratively.

2. “Sober”

“Sober” is a well produced and performed track. Lorde’s artistry is on full display throughout. The track sounds kind of sinister and frantic. “What will we do when we’re sober?” she asks throughout.

3. “Homemade Dynamite”

Again, I have to praise Lorde’s vocals and the overall production of this track. “Homemade Dynamite” tells the story of a party that got a little too crazy. Perhaps the greatest standout in this track is the flute-sounding riff that repeats throughout. The song gets a little bit repetitive, but overall “Homemade Dynamite” is a solid song.

4. “The Louvre”

I like how atmospheric “The Louvre” is. Lorde’s vocals in this song are some of my favorite of hers on the album. I like the subtle  guitar on  the verses leading up to the chorus. This kind of instrumentation wasn’t seen a lot on Pure Heroine. The lyrics are also stand outs, as they show Lorde’s personality. “They’ll hang us in the Louvre, Down the back, but who cares-still the Louvre” and “Megaphone to my chest , Broadcast the boom boom boom boom and make ’em all dance for it” are two stand out lyrical phrases.

5. “Liability”

“Liability” was the second track released from Melodrama.  It is a sweet little piano ballad, with lyrics that I can relate too as they outline the feeling of being a burden. I initially really liked the track. It even made one of my new music roundups.  However, as I listen to it in the context of the album, it’s kind of a low point for me. It’s a little bit too slow, and there isn’t enough going on . Up until this point, the album has really nice, colorful production, and then everything kind of slows to a stop once it reaches “Liability”. I’m not saying it’s bad by any means, but I wish there were more to it.

6. “Hard Feelings/Loveless”

“Hard Feelings/Loveless” is a weird track (or I guess two tracks) for me. The first track “Hard Feelings” is an atmospheric spilling of emotions. The production is good, and so are the vocals. However, I get kind of bored with it quickly. The second track “Loveless” is my favorite track in this 2-in-1 song. Melodrama is a bit more emotional than Pure Heroine, and I can’t lie, I kind of missed Lorde’s snarky attitude from her debut. “Loveless” gave me this attitude that I craved. Her lyrics are biting and she deems our generation as L-O-V-E-L-E-S-S. The one problem I have with “Loveless” is that there isn’t more of it! I would have preferred Lorde to build on “Loveless” rather than combine it with “Hard Feelings.” That would have been a great song.

7.  “Sober II (Melodrama)

To start off, I want to say that I like the melancholy feel to this song and the strings throughout. However, it is kind of slow, until the beat drops at about a minute in. That is when the song truly reaches its full potential. The fluff at the beginning seems kind of unnecessary.

8. “Writer in the Dark”

I don’t have much to say about “Writer in the Dark.” It definitely isn’t my favorite song on the album, but Lorde’s vocals really shine.

9. “Supercut”

“Supercut” is one of my favorite tracks on the album. It  has such a light feeling. I’m probably getting repetitive by now, but the production and the vocals were pristine-again. My favorite lines are when Lorde repeats “In your car, the radio up.” Not bad for what fans are calling Melodrama’s “Ribs.”

10.” Liability (Reprise)”

This song is best described as a filler. It kind of sounds like “Hard Feelings” because of the chill tempo and atmospheric sound. Overall, while it’s not bad quality, I find it pretty boring.

11. “Perfect Places”

I did not like “Perfect Places” when I first heard it. I though it sounded like generic pop, but after several listens, my opinion has changed. Lorde saved the best song for last. I love the lyrics. “I’m 19 and I’m on fire” and “I can’t stand to be alone” are stand outs for me. I applaud this song for being the only song apart from “Green Light” that is memorable. I find myself humming it and remembering it the best. The other songs are good, but they don’t have quite the same staying power that this ones has. With “Perfect Places” I never have to ask myself “What did that song sound like again?” Lorde is the queen of closers.

 

I applaud Lorde. So many artists breakout with great debuts and then fall victim to sophomore slumps. Lorde had such high expectations to meet, and I think she did a great job with Melodrama. I always knew Lorde would be around for a while, but this release has validated that she is not a one hit  or one album wonder. Melodrama is not imperfect, but I love how it showcases Lorde’s raw talent and uniqueness. Her strangeness is her hallmark, and I think it’s so refreshing.

I couldn’t relate to Melodrama as much as I could relate to Pure Heroine, but I’m not surprised by this-Lorde is now 20 and I am still a teenager. She’s less angsty, and she’s experienced more life. With that being said, Pure Heroine will always hold a special place in my heart, but I’m happy to make room for Melodrama.

My rating: 7/10

Couturely Sound ❤