Lady Gaga is back, and better than ever, after surviving a hip injury and having a two-year break from the scene. Her third studio album, ARTPOP, is a synthpop blend with hints of techno, R&B, disco, and a bit of rock ‘n’ roll.
Gaga bought in a variety of producers, including the likes of newbie Zedd and old favourite RedOne, to create the pot of Gaga-style tunes that is ARTPOP.
The album was released on Streamline and Interscope records, and within the first week, it only sold a mere 258,000 copies. This, for Gaga, is a big disappointment in comparison to the success of her first two previous albums.
Lady Gaga herself has described ARTPOP as “a celebration and poetic musical journey.” First single ‘Applause’ almost missed out on being part of ARTPOP; it’s had mixed reviews and was constantly compared to pop sweetheart Katy Perry’s ‘Roar’, but I personally think this song can stand on its own. It’s a fun pop melody and has a hint of Bowie inspired vocals from Gaga.
‘Donatella’, which can only be about fashion great Donatella Versace, is a beacon of female empowerment and how you should be proud of who you are.
The third single off the album, ‘Venus,’ was the last song recorded and was meant to be the second single until it was decided that ‘Do What U Want’ would be instead. The song is inspired by Sandro Botecelli’s legendary ‘The Birth Of Venus’ painting, sampling French indie-electro duo Zombie Zombie’s song ‘Rocket Number 9’. The song itself has a very rave/club feel about it without being too overpowering.
ARTPOP delves into many themes: sex, fame, empowerment, drug use and transgender culture. Along with the impressive collaboration of producers, Gaga managed to pull in guest appearances from the likes of T.I, R. Kelly, and even old school rapper Twista.
At only 27 years old, Lady Gaga doesn’t seem as if she is stopping any time soon. The fact that she is a strong singer is something that those who don’t even like her can’t argue against. The vocals on this record are impressive and as powerful as on the two records previous; the fact that she has collaborated with other singers somewhat overshadows her vocal ability a little.
It will come as no shock that the songs on this album all have a ‘party’ feel; you can expect these songs to be played on a night out, so you better get used to hearing them. The album is over an hour long with an 18 song track list. With this being said, does it really require four different versions of ‘Applause’? It becomes tedious and sloppy, and it’s as if Gaga couldn’t decide which songs she wanted to put out, so she just mashed them all together, creating this 69-minute work of art.
TOP TRACKS: ‘G.U.Y.’; ‘Do What U Want’; ‘Swine’
FOR FANS OF: Ke$ha; Katy Perry; Miley Cyrus