Written by Mallory Delchamp
I distinctly remember the moment I first heard Lady Gaga; I was driving around my hometown and “Just Dance” came on the radio. My first thought was not “Who is this?” but “What is this?” Gaga, or Mother Monster as her fans lovingly call her, has introduced a new sound into the pop music world and she has continued to do so with the release of every album. Like Madonna, Queen, and David Bowie, Gaga has managed to influence an entire generation of music lovers.
Artpop, Lady Gaga’s fourth album (or third if you wish to count 2009’s The Fame Monster as a continuation of her debut album, The Fame) has been eagerly anticipated from the entertainment community for months since her hiatus late last year. Her first single from the album, “Applause” has continued to do well on the music charts but was greeted with mixed reviews from fans. The second single, “Do What You Want” is a clever counterpart to Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” with lyrics consisting of “So do what you want, what you want with my body, do what you want, Don’t stop, let’s party…” The remaining thirteen songs on the high energy dance album follow in the footsteps of Gaga’s 2008 debut single, “Just Dance.”
“Aura” and “Venus,” the album’s opening songs, are catchy and upbeat and feature the sound that Gaga has come to be known for. “Sexxx Dreams,” a song that is about exactly what its title conveys, pushes the envelope a little further than that of her most sex-fueled lyrics on past albums. “Jewels N’Drugs” takes the cake for most unique song of the album, not in the sense of the song’s particular sound necessarily (It sounds like any other Beyonce-esque, hip hop song) but in the sense that it is unlike anything Mother Monster has experimented with. “Jewels N’Drugs” also features rap and hip-hop artists, T.I. Too Short, and Twista and it will definitely appeal to hip-hop music fans.
“Dope” is a slow piano ballad and is beautiful despite its questionable lyrics (Which artistically consist of “I need you more than dope, Need you more than dope I need you more than dope”). It certainly doesn’t posses the power of 2011’s “You and I.” “Gypsy” with its memorable chorus still doesn’t strike me as much as “Edge of Glory” (arguably one of Gaga’s best songs to date) did.
The album’s title song is fun and Madonna-eqsue and I’m sure it will be the pop queen’s next single. “Manicure”, “Mary Jane Holland” and “Swine” are all great party songs but more so seem like the filler tracks of the album. “Donatella” is a clever song about the fashion industry and its lyrics are a prime example of just how talented of a song writer Lady Gaga truly is, my favorite line being “Walk down the runway, but don’t puke, It’s okay You just had a salad today, Boulangerie Just ask your gay friends their advice, before you Get a spray tan on Holiday, in Taipei…”
Bottom Line: Lady Gaga is brilliant. Everyone knows that. However, I don’t think people realize just how brilliant she is. She has a remarkably strong voice and she’s a fantastic writer but I am afraid Art Pop, while it is a fun CD to listen to around your apartment, doesn’t showcase her artistic talent quite like her former albums. Regardless, little monsters will not be too disappointed and they can all start prepping their claws for her next endeavor.