After struggling with rehab, public breakups and a diagnosis of lupus, Selena Gomez rises like a phoenix from the ashes of her past struggles with her new album, "Revival."
This album addresses some of the foremost problems 20-year-olds usually face, playing on themes of self-discovery, love and heartbreak.
"Revival," her first album released under Interscope and Polydor Records, became available in stores on Oct. 9.
It’s hard to define the genre of Gomez’s album — she makes delightful changes in tempo, rhythm, instruments and singing styles as the album progresses from song to song. The album offers a refreshing mix of musical influences that range from ‘60s rhythm and blues with "Hands to Myself" to ‘90s punk-pop with "Kill Em With Kindness" to some Latin inspiration with "Body Heat." The whole album receives heavy influence from modern electronic dance music, known as EDM.
Gomez manages to address physical attraction, dissatisfaction with the status quo and other mature themes in a way that is both fresh and cathartic. Each song has an underlying emotional message she effectively shares with her listeners, ranging from the self-discovery in "Revival" to the sexual tension found in "Body Heat."
This writer awarded this album a B+.
When listening to the album in order, the songs alternate between slow and quick-paced tempos, providing a roller coaster effect that changes the mood enough to keep the listener entertained. These changes in mood make the listener crave the next song and force the cathartic effect of the music, which sometimes gives the listener chills.
Likewise, Gomez’s voice is well-suited to the vocal range she exhibits in her album, ranging from pop-like to soulful feels. The album exhibits Gomez’s willingness to experiment with both her voice and her music without being constrained to one specific style. That being said, she sometimes falls short of fully reaching the high notes she attempts to sing in "Revival," "Hands to Myself" and "Sober." Her best songs are those in her naturally lower vocal range, which include "Same Old Love," "Camouflage" and "Survivors." They are a joy to listen to.
There isn't a song in her recent album that particularly stands out, but this is only because they’re all equally enjoyable in their own way. With catchy rhythms and mesmerizing vocals, people may find it difficult to resist bobbing their heads or tapping their feet to the beats Gomez presents us.
She doesn’t cling to contemporary pop and this stance works perfectly in her favor. Her new album is well worth listening to if you’re interested in Gomez’s music, R&B or EDM. It cleanly meshes older music styles with a modern flavor, creating something that personifies Gomez’s personality.
In some ways, the album is addictive. You’ll likely soon be hearing her music grace dance floors with its irresistible beats and uplifting vocals.