“Our rules, our dreams, we’re blind.” “Homemade Dynamite,” my favorite track on Lorde’s new album “Melodrama,” flawlessly conveys how Lorde has matured both musically and emotionally. This summer, Lorde (or Ella Yelich O’Connor) came out with her sophomore album, “Melodrama,” following her 2013 album “Pure Heroine.”
Her new album topped at fifth place on the UK album charts and 13th place on the US album charts. Her album provides both positive and angst-filled emotions that depict Lorde’s journey into a new stage of her life.
Her first track, first single, and first music video, “Green Light,” depicts a story of the singer moving on from a past love. The positive reaction that came with the music video and first single was not a surprise, seeing as her first track from “Pure Heroine,” “Royals,” was a huge success. She was the youngest artist to hit Billboard’s Hot One Hundred since 1987, in 2013 for “Royals.”
Her third track, and my personal favorite, “Homemade Dynamite,” is about the moment when you first fall in love. The slow, soft beginning is very misleading, seeing as after 20 seconds an upbeat, pop tempo leads through the rest of the song. It is full of danceable rhythms, a catch chorus lines, and beautiful harmonies.
Her second single, “Liability,” begins with a piano ballad moving into Lorde singing about how many of her relationships are cut short because of the uncomfortable situations caused by her fame. Her angsty, yet soft tone provides the perfect amount of bittersweet misery that one would want while listening to an alternative pop song.
“Hard Feelings/Loveless” are two shorter songs connected in one track. “Hard Feelings” expresses the emotions of bitterness and resentment felt after a breakup. It has a simple melody, but very interesting instrumentals that provide a fairytale-like sound to a more steam punk sound, that include strings, synthesizer, and drums. Then, the track links the two songs with 50 seconds of instrumental transition and an unexpected, eerie sound byte of a man stating “this is my favorite tape.” “Loveless” is both very different than its sister in tone and message. It begins with a simple, melody and poppy instrumentals. It also contains short-lived, yet very interesting harmonies. Its message comments on people’s thoughts that millennials have ruined love.
Her second single and last track on the album, “Perfect Places,” provides the perfect upbeat outro to her long-awaited second album. The tone is a bit misleading for the message that teenagers’ ideas of fun are anything but, and leave you feeling empty.
Melodrama was definitely different from its very popular predecessor. It depicts a story of Lorde maturing from a teenager to an adult, from the first track to the last. The album’s name even picks fun at the dramatic teenage stage of life. Melodrama provides beautiful vocals and instrumentals, and finds a way to be soft and loud at the same time. It is truly a perfect successor to her last album, even though its popularity was lower than the previous. I think that her decrease in popularity since “Royals” and Pure Heroine was ultimately positive. She was able to move from mainstream pop to the niche, alt-pop genre that perfectly fits her music and personality.