She may be 16 years old but she sure has the vocal stamina and range of someone twice her age. Lorde’s debut album, Pure Heroine, is addictive, beautifully executed, well produced, and extremely well written. The New Zealand native provides one of the best albums of the year, and she clearly knows it. With the album only being ten songs, those ten songs are almost better than most of the songs on the radio right now. Though many of the songs are about teen life and angst, she, along with her writing and producing partner Joel Little, manage to keep each song fresh, interesting and filled with metaphors.
The album opens with Tennis Court, a pop-y portrayal of how fame is superficial. Her impending fame can’t own her no matter how badly she wants things to go her way in terms of her singing career. She wants a life where she can sing and be happy but she doesn’t want that to change her mind frame. The next song is just as bright as the name implies, 400 Lux. The lyrics, however, darken the tone a bit with lines about drinking and feeling empty. We’re hollow like the bottles that we drain/?You drape your wrists over the steering wheel/Pulses can drive from here/We might be hollow, but we’re brave.
The big hit from the album is Royals, which is anti glamour and popular. But every song’s like gold teeth, Grey Goose, trippin’ in the bathroom/Blood stains, ball gowns, trashin’ the hotel room/We don’t care, we’re driving Cadillacs in our dreams. It’s ironic that the radio plays this in the same rotation with artists who glorify the very things Lorde criticizes. My favorite song on the album is Ribs, a personal song about the anxiety felt by growing older. The song does have a feeling of slight euphoria to it making it not only a great song but also one with great production.
There is plenty of imagery in Buzzcut Season from I remember when your head caught flame/It kissed your scalp and caressed your brain to Explosions on TV, and all the girls with heads inside a dream. Dealing with depression is daunting feat and Buzzcut Season does its best to replicate that on song.
While not all gloomy, Team livens up her album with a faster, uppity beat. The subject matter is similar to Royals, criticizing the glamour portrayed in mainstream music. Glory and Gore, Still Sane, White Teeth Teens, and A World Alone come next. All can be interpreted in many ways other than what’s on the surface of each song. Listening to each song over and over may provide you a new way to look at the song. What places the icing on the cake for this album is the structure. Though ten songs, she evokes a sense of symmetry between the first and last song. A World Alone, the closer, really hammers down her being an outcast.
The album title Pure Heroine could mean that her album is addictive like the drug heroin. Or it could mean that she’s the latest heroine in the music industry, entering an already saturated market filled with Miley Cyrus’ with a new sound. Lorde’s Pure Heroine deserves multiple listens and warrants a purchase.Google+