Ladies and Genltlemen, LILY ALLEN is officially hitting for the halo! With her latest release she does not only response to KANYE WEST‘s Christ-orientated titled album, she also got a message for all her female colleagues: She wants to take the crown. It’s been almost five years since her critical acclaimed forerunner It’s Not Me, It’s You, so expectations among listeners and fans were definitely high. Was it worth the wait? Let’s get straight to the point: ALLEN‘s third studio album cannot outplay her last one, but there are still some great moments on Sheezus.
In the title track, the singer talks about her position in the big business. A lot happened after her last release and many female artists established their place in the pop universe. ALLEN heard about that, but isn’t really afraid of competition. Mentioning divas like LADY GAGA, BEYONCÉ or LORDE by name, she shuts them all down, so she can be queen. With its nasty lyrics and mid-tempo beat, Sheezus is a smart opener with a badass message straight from the beginning.
The music industry or life as a celebrity are recurring themes on the LP. As always, the singer works her way through it with an overdose of sarcasm. Silver Spoon deals with the well-known problem of false accusation and gossiping, while on Insincerely Yours, a chilling pop number with 90’s influences, ALLEN makes clear that she’s not here to make friends, but money. Still, the highlight among them is Hard Out Here, the album’s lead single and probably one of the sassiest feministic anthems lately.
With the country-orientated As Long As I Got You, ALLEN serves the follower to her 2009 hit It’s Not Fair, but this time it’s a little bit louder and even more irish. Take My Place and Life For Me represent the most personal tracks on the record and it would’ve been nice to have more of those pieces. We all know yet how tough the british singer is through her music, so it’s more interesting to listen about her life as a mother and vulnerable woman. Catchy numbers like Air Balloon or Our Time are still nice, but textual a little bit boring and nothing new.
A bit confusing is the one and a half minute long Interlude, which sounds like a rewinded record. Perhaps it’s the singers transformation to a goddess or just a pass to her lovely cover of KEANE’s Somewhere Only We Know. Or maybe she was bored.
So after a little analysis of the album’s themes, how’s the sound of Sheezus? Well, that’s actually the sticking point. Compared to her previus work, Sheezus seems just a bit more pop and overproduced. There’s no real advancement in her music. Yes, there are many different elements in the tracks, we’ve got some modern R’n’B (Close Your Eyes) or even Dubstep (URL Badman), but in the end it’s bubblegum pop, which is typical for LILY ALLEN. Some people might still fall for her catchy tunes and ‘Fuck Off’-attitude while singing, others will be simply bored.
LILY ALLEN still got her vibe and power in words, but with its title and artwork, ‘Sheezus’ promises more than you’ll get.
NBHAP Rating: 3/5