- By Mica Kendall -
Three years in the making, the stakes were high for BØRNS’ sophomore album to top his iconic, debut album, Dopamine, and its certified platinum single, “Electric Love,” that rose his name to fame in 2015. The pressure did not stop BØRNS from bringing his A-game on his new album, Blue Madonna, exhibiting BØRNS’ mature, well-crafted, and personalized lyrics.
The first track, “God Save Our Young Blood,” turns a duet made in heaven into a reality.
BØRNS and Lana Del Rey’s vocals meshing together to result in an upbeat, synth-pop track that emits a summer romance vibe. The next track, “Faded Heart,” was the first single released that showcases BØRNS’ new take on his up-tempo tracks. Other energetic tracks include “We Don’t Care,” featuring bold guitar riffs. These are reminiscent of Joan Jett’s guitar riffs. From her 1980’s hit, “Bad Reputation,” and “Man” with its youthful message to live life in the moment.
Yet, the album contains catchy and upbeat tracks. They make you want to get on your feet and dance. They balance with slow, stripped down tracks emitting a sense of relaxation and ease. This is evident in tracks like “Blue Madonna”. With its crisp, smooth beat that is lyrically justified in sounding “cooler than a strawberry shake.” “Blue Madonna” is a standout track that lives up to being the title of the album.
The interplay of BØRNS and Del Rey’s feathery vocals create a relaxing, melodic, and synchronized harmony.
This gives off a sense of rhythmic intimacy to the album. This sense of intimacy is also apparent in “Sweet Dreams” with its infectious and relaxing beat. It showcases BØRNS' falsettos and shows a stylistic similarity to his older track, “Overnight Sensation.”
Most notable though is BØRNS usage of the synthesizer that creates the infectious instrumentals to some of the fan favorite tracks on the album like “Iceberg” with its mirroring instrumentals that give off an auditory vibe similar to the Stranger Things’ theme song. In addition,“Tension,” BØRNS' first interlude song use the synthesizer to create a tropical instrumental beat. While the song “Supernatural” showcases Borns’ light and airy vocals interconnecting with the harmonic beat in the chorus. Lastly, the album closes with “Bye-bye Darling” This was clearly influenced by Elton John’s keyboard ballads. It ends the album with an optimistic note on the departure of a past relationship.
Blue Madonna exhibits both a retainment and departure in style from BØRNS’ debut, Dopamine, which gives Blue Madonna a credible sense of maturity and shows how much Borns has evolved as an artist. Though the reign of Dopamine may be over, Blue Madonna is an album worthy of streaming and being the soundtrack for your past relationship.