Lorde: Melodrama

That feeling when your cool, kindred Goth friend abandons you for the cheerleader squad. Former champion of the outcast Lorde’s sophomore album is heavily and obviously influenced by her joining the Taylor Swift pop tart party squad.

It’s not bad for what it is, but it’s not my Lorde. If not for a few good tracks and the bizarrely gushing praise elsewhere, I wouldn’t even bother writing about it.

The lovely, melancholy ballad “Liability” is by far the standout track, and “Writer in the Dark” has a nice Kate Bush vibe.

“Green Light” and “Sober” take a more interesting approach to catch dance music than the rest of the album. Sadly, Lorde’s exquisitely distinctive voice and lyrical poetry is otherwise watered down with Auto-Tune and mediocre beats.

Unlike her addictive, uniquely spectacular debut, Pure Heroine, I doubt I’ll bother listening to Melodrama in the future.

The new releases by Deap Vally, The Company Stores, and Amanda Palmer are far more interesting.

Introducing The Company Stores…

The Company Stores are my favorite local band. They are very well known and beloved in Charleston, WV. With their recent set at Mountain Stage, I think/hope the band is poised for a national break-through soon. Their lovely, eclectic new album, Little Lights, has quickly become a favorite of mine.

Lead singer-songwriter Casey Litz’s lilting, robust voice at times reminds me of Rhiannen Giddens, Natalie Merchant, and Heartless Bastards’ Erika Wennerstrom, but their genre-bending, self-described “Hill Hop” sound–a mix of clangy Appalachian folk fiddles, swirling psychedelic rock guitars, big band brass, and occasional splashes of classical piano–is incomparable.

Standout tracks are “Fall From Heaven,” “Nightingale,” “Optimistic,” and “Shenandoah Fall,” but the album is fantastic in it’s entirety.

The Company Stores Official Site