Charli - CharliXCX
Charli’s newest album, Charli, is most certainly her most ambitious album yet. Charli gives us a glimpse into what could be the future of pop, but is it a future we want to be in? The question of whether Charli’s vision is fully and cohesively realized on this album should also be explored.
It’s definitely undeniable that songs like “Gone,” “Next Level Charli,” and “February 2017 (feat. Clairo & Yaeji)” are beautifully produced and keep you dancing while still pushing this new futuristic style of music. Along with the typical bops you would expect, Charli also provides a refreshing introspective ballad with the song “White Mercedes,” which is focused on the fickle nature of Charli’s heart.
Most of these songs are the perfect amount of weird to keep you intrigued and listening without completely isolating you from the Charli that most fans are used to. Some songs definitely do cross that boundary and leave you wondering “What the hell am I listening to?” “Click (feat. Kim Petras & Tommy Cash)” starts strong with a really interesting beat and a great flow, but the last 30 seconds of the song is literally unlistenable as she blasts what sounds like a more metallic version of nails on a chalkboard out of seemingly nowhere. “2099 (feat. Troye Sivan)” suffers from a similar issue where the first and last 20 seconds of the song are just distorted metallic noises blasting in your ear. While the main portions of both of these songs are innovative and exciting to listen to, these weird moments detract from the overall listening experience and make the song feel more like random unpleasant noises mashed together. On the other end of this spectrum are songs like “1999” and “Blame It On Your Love (feat. Lizzo),” which are quite frankly way too basic to feel like they belong on this album. They don’t offer the same innovation that the rest of the songs provide, they don’t challenge the norm of pop, and instead they fit pretty squarely into the formula of what you would expect out of a typical pop track.
Overall, Charli is a very unique, fun, and adventurous album that suffers from a bit of an identity crisis.