Lady Gaga – Born This Way

May 22, 2011 at 4:54 PM | Posted in Lady Gaga | Leave a comment

ALBUM REVIEW
Lady Gaga – Born This Way

1. Marry The Night
2. Born This Way
3. Government Hooker
4. Judas
5. Americano
6. Hair
7. Scheiße
8. Bloody Mary
9. Bad Kids
10. Highway Unicorn (Road To Love)
11. Heavy Metal Lover
12. Electric Chapel
13. Yoü And I
14. The Edge Of Glory

♦ ♦ ♦

Born This Way is the second full-length album (third overall) by American singer Lady Gaga, released on May 23, 2011 by Interscope Records. The album was well-received by music critics. It hasn’t charted yet, but this will surely be edited once it has.

What a damn awful cover, really, but Marry The Night is the first track to make up for that. Gaga takes us to church with the organ interlude, after which some heavy synths and beats drop in to give it a huge electropop ambience. This immediately shows her change of style for this album, but her amazing vocals haven’t changed a bit. The chorus and bridge are very catchy, they tend to stay in your head all day long. Very good opening track.

It doesn’t matter if you love him, or capital H-I-M“. Yeah baby, it’s Born This Way. I have really come to love this song and every little note that makes up the track. I like the rumbling synths in the background, the pumping beats and the clear vocals Gaga displays throughout the song. The message in the song is a strong one, another fact I truly like about this song. Everything about this one is right, well done.

Can Gaga sing opera? Well, aparently she can, judging to the opening of Government Hooker. The rest of the song is just like the previous two; uptempo electropop. The song doesn’t really have a message or even pretty lyrics, they’re a bit random actually, but the melody in the song has something. Gaga’s singing melody in the chorus is especially noticeable here, but the rest of the song is just something fun to listen to.

Judas is incorporating more techno elements into the music, while Gaga’s vocals adopt a more Jamaican-Patois style (half-rapping in the verses). It doesn’t really fit either her or the song, but I’m cool with it. The line ‘Judas, Juda-a-aas, Judas, Ga-ga-aa‘ will probably receive the same status as the ‘Bad Romance’ line did, but it’s very funny to say the least. This song is one of the best on the album and it was a good choice to be a single.

Then comes Americano, a bit of a mess. I don’t really like this song, it’s like ‘Alejandro’ gone chaotic with a mix of ‘We No Speak Americano’, so it doesn’t come of as original to me. I’m a bit irritated by Gaga’s vocals here and what they did to them, especially in the chorus, so this track is a bit of a misfit, unfortunately.

Hair is much better, it even takes a little bit after Gaga’s previous works with an addictive melody in the chorus and the synths are also a bit toned down when compared to some previous songs. Somewhere in the bridge, Gaga shows she can also have some very raw and grungy vocals, and if she does that with moderation it can actually give a song its spark! This is another one of the best songs yet.

Okay, I don’t know what to think about Scheiße. In the first place, I couldn’t even understand her (caution: I don’t have to speak German just because I’m Dutch, those two languages are two very different things xD), I had to look up the lyrics for her German lines… She kinda sucks at singing them but that’s what makes this song so funny at the same time! The rest of the song is based on heavy synths and beats and good vocals by Gaga, and it’s one of those songs I hate one time and love the other time. This time, I actually like it for its quirkyness.

Bloody Mary is the first song to tone things down a bit with a relatively slower tempo, so it’s more resembling her earlier work in my opinion. I like the ‘dum dum dah de dah‘  line in the middle of the song, I don’t know why, and the chorus is also very mysterious and the lyrics are a bit religious (with Gaga singing about Jesus). She actually makes a screamo note after every chorus, didn’t even know she could do that!

Bad Kids is more lighthearted while still displaying that electropop style the entire album has, but then in a less heavy way. The synth lines are very well arranged and I love how simple the chorus actually is. At first I though this song was very dull and meaningless, but when I listen to it again, I like it! One of those songs I probably had to get used to, but it’s actually a very nice track.

I like the chorus of Highway Unicorn (Road To Love), and the song is also one of the more bombastic dance songs on the album with a lot of crash percussion in it and blazing synth melodies. The bass is also more prominent here, and I love how the song ends with the organ section. It’s more of an average song after 10 uptempo songs…

Heavy Metal Lover is not a metal song at all, it’s more in the style of Born This Way actually. It has its heavier moments in the case of the synths and beats, but Gaga tones it down a bit with her sweet humming vocals in the chorus. There aren’t really highs and lows in this song, it just carries itsself along in a nice way without getting all boring. It’s a nice, decent song.

Electric Chapel opens with a nice electric guitar riff before the beats drop back in for another uptempo song. It’s funny to hear how Gaga incorporated elements of both the title words in the music, electric guitars, synths and beats for the first and the mysterious church bells for the second word. Another song that carries on its beats, but it’s nice.

Finally we get a more ballad-like song, Yoü And I, a rock ‘n’ roll track. The bass and handclaps make me think of Queen’s music (‘We Will Rock You a.o.), and I really liked the prominent electric guitar riffs in this song. This is the song I was really waiting for on this album, this is a beautiful and yet strong track, with very solid vocals. This is the best song on the album, period.

And we’re going out with a bang: The Edge Of Glory, a nice catchy dancepop song with a very nice melody in the chorus. I also liked Gaga’s vocals very much in that part, set to lovely synth riffs. To me, this song is all about fun for the ears, even though the message is sad, and the saxophones were such a unique addition to this song! This song was a good closer for the album.

Gaga delivered a good and solid album here, the only thing that was missing were one or two more ballads. The uptempo songs overrule this album, and there’s nothing wrong with that but the only thing in that case is that they have to be good to make the album a real stayer. Gaga lived up to that expectation, and even though you may not like every song the first time you hear them, you will probably like them when you give them multiple listens. In my case, that really worked. This album may not be as awesome as her debut album was, she may never release a bigger succes album than that one, but at least she gave a solid second album with a little bit of a style change, in her music as well as in her voice. More electropop, less regular pop, more raw vocals and less poppy vocals. This woman shows she has grown and has gained even more self-confidence. And she’s worth it.

Favorite tracks: Marry The Night | Born This Way | Judas | Hair | Scheiße | Yoü And I | The Edge Of Glory

OVERALL RATING

4 stars

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