Saturday 27 July 2013

Selena Gomez - Stars Dance

Losing 'the Scene', this is the first album from Gomez as a young woman.  'Stars Dance' is the very essence of predictability: as you'd expect, the young Disney image is ditched in favour of thirteen sexy, Rihanna-lite EDM tracks.

Of course, the long-running on-off relationship with Justin Bieber has informed many of the lyrics, particularly on Forget Forever that opens with the lines "I told, I told, I told myself again, I'm never running back on what I said".  What's most notable, however, is Gomez' newfound sexuality - as unleashed with her recent role in Spring Breakers.  This is most evident on the dirty beats of B.E.A.T, the Flo-Rida-esque Undercover ("You don't need no other lover, we can keep it undercover"), and Nobody Does It Like You with its Disney-eschewing opening lyric "You're my bad boy fairytale, Prince Charming with a dark side".

The influence of Rihanna is huge, with many of the tracks sounding like cast-offs.  This is most explicit in Like A Champion, with its reggae-inspired beat and "rum pa pa pum pa" chorus.  It even includes the lyric "shine like diamonds in the sky".  It doesn't get more blatant than that.

Most of all this is an album of bland EDM pop, written for nobody in particular.  It's quite frankly a shock that David Guetta didn't produce this.  The title track alone contains auto-tuning and dubstep beats - a theme that continues throughout until final party anthem Music Feels Better.  In the context of the album, recent single Come and Get It stands out with its Indian bhangra style - a welcome moment of distinction from Gomez in an otherwise bland attempt to mature her image.


Gizzle's Choice:
* B.E.A.T
* Come And Get It
* Music Feels Better

Listen: 'Stars Dance' is available now.