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“Shadowy electro-pop landscape meets introspective, hypnotic verses”
Could the classic case of an old soul trapped in a sixteen-year-old body give way to a new pop archetype? Evidenced by her debut full-length, Ella Yelich-O’Connor – better known as Lorde – could very well be the opinionated heroine, bringing authenticity to an overtly manufactured genre while challenging our preconceived notions amid sonics reminiscent of Massive Attack. Most endearing is her ability to transcend generations, even with coolly detached lyrics that focus heavily on coming-of-age tribulations and an “us-against-the-world” mentality (“Team,” “Glory and Gore,” “White Teeth Teens”).
Crystalline perfection comes in the form of the globally-recognized, multi-platinum “Royals,” in which she presents a treatise on pop culture while eloquently rebelling against the excessive lifestyle: “It don’t run in our blood / That kind of lux just ain’t for us / We crave a different kind of buzz.” Equally impressive are her introspective bursts of poetry that rival literary giants: “I live in a hologram with you” (“Buzzcut Season”), “Living in ruins of the palace within my dreams” (“Team”), “I’ll see the veins of my city like they do in space” (“Tennis Court”).
The standout here is the entrancing and sensual femme fatale of “400 Lux”: “We’re never done with killing time. Can I kill it with you?” she croons on the haunting track. Perceptive, evocative, and unpretentious, Pure Heroine is only the beginning of Lorde’s reign.