It's been four years since we've seen Lorde take the world by storm. She was only sixteen when the New Zealander released Pure Heroine, and after years of learning experiences, Lorde has matured in Melodrama, her long awaited sophomore album.
There are many more mature themes that play out in Melodrama than in Pure Heroine, fittingly. As Lorde described it, Pure Heroine was an album that immortalized her teen years, and Melodrama is where the party starts. That certainly feels like the sentiment expressed in opening track and lead single 'Green Light.' The song, which references The Great Gatsby, begins darkly like much of Pure Heroine before quickly changing keys and becoming something much more fun, Lorde's blissful chanting "I'm waiting for it, that green light, I want it" sounding confident and powerful. 'Homemade Dynamite' embraces the party full force, and though the hook isn't that great, it's a fun track nonetheless.
The powerful intro is met by many more sobering tracks. Melodrama is about the party that comes, but also the low points that come in a night. Fittingly, 'Sober' is the first track to introduce a more restrained tone, the pleading lyrics with great melodies are backed by pretty synths and punchy trumpets, making this track feel active but still like its checking itself. 'Liability' is one of the hardest hitting tracks the album has to offer, the beautiful piano ringing sweetly under Lorde's admittance that her presence in a relationship can be taxing. 'Writer In The Dark' gives the message of 'Liability' a bit of context as Lorde speaks of a relationship in which her love will be unconditional.
The album is really beautiful, and it shows in many placed. The instrumental of 'The Louvre' is perfect, finding the right balance between purity and recklessness, with the melodies adding more to it. 'Sober II' has gorgeous strings backing it, and the falsettos that ring above them are to die for. You can tell that every moment of this record was planned carefully, with every chord and transition sounding like it has a specific purpose.
Lorde has matured in Melodrama, and it shows in every aspect of the album. Every corner of the record has importance, and every moment is filled with emotion. Lorde has grown considerably since Pure Heroine and her music has come with her for the ride. It's a fantastic record that'll really get you thinking.
Favorite Tracks: Green Light, Liability, The Louvre, Sober
Least Favorite Track: Hard Feelings / Loveless
Rating: 87 / 100
Stream or buy Melodrama on Apple Music: