And just like that, she's back. We knew it was coming but it's still hard to take it in - Lady Gaga is back with new music! A week ago, a fansite found details of a single scheduled for release on September 9, and it's all solidified!
'Perfect Illusion' is Gaga's long-awaited return to the music world. It sounds like Gaga has reinvented herself since she put a pause on music for awhile. 'Perfect Illusion' starts off with clean guitar and a bassy synth as sparkly synths build into the first verse. Gaga seems to be channeling Demi Lovato as well as her own grandiose in her vocal approach - the high and powerful pre-chorus leading in from softer verses serves as a big contrast between them. The instrumental is put on the backburner as the song tunes into Gaga instead of the rest of the music, her vocals as powerful as ever.
As great as it is to have Gaga back, it's really hard to really appreciate this song. There's just a lot of inconsistencies and places it just didn't go. For one, the mixing seems to have taken the instrumental and put it on the backburner. By backburner, I mean it sounds like the song was mixed five minutes before it was released. Gaga's vocals are so loud above the instrumental and it kills the bass that could be supporting her higher voice. Gaga's vocals are great but without that big, in-your-face synth instrumental this song feels empty. Listening to Gaga yell "Perfect illusion" for two straight minutes isn't exactly the most fun listening experience, either. Take that and the lack of meat in the instrumental and you're left with a super underwhelming track.
I'm as happy to see Lady Gaga back as the next person, but 'Perfect Illusion' doesn't feel like the appropriate come back. There's just nothing to dig into with it. It has Gaga, and that's about all the credit you can give. The song is written badly, mixed badly, and there's no bass beyond the intro. If Gaga has more planned, let's hope they feel more big. You can't have Lady Gaga and underwhelming in the same sentence.
You can listen to 'Perfect Illusion' via Apple Music.
Rating: 50 / 100