There are so many good names you can make out of Lady Gaga's album title, ARTPOP. CHARTPOP and CHARTTOP if you're a little monster for instance. Alternatively there's CHARTFLOP, ARTFLOP, FARTPOP, SHARTPOP and ARTPOOP if you're hoping to see Rocket Number 9 blast Gaga off to Venus for good. She must be aware of these incredible names, right?
ARTPOP which the star began recording straight after releasing 2011s Born This Way appears to be Gaga's most piercing body of work so far. While the last album sank comfortably under your skin, ARTPOP tries to sock you in the face time and time again. A number of previously performed or referenced tracks, such as 'Princess Die' and 'Ratchet', (which allegedly featured a verse from motor-mouth MC, Azealia Banks) didn't end up making the cut. Luckily it's to no avail, as the 15-strong set is busting with beats which make the album sound as busy as the album cover looks. A more fitting name probably would've been ArtEDM, as you can clearly hear it's wompy synth influences dominating almost every song.
Although the star commented that her favourite track on the album was ever changing, it currently stood at the trap-laced banger, 'Jewels n' Drugs'. It's easy to hear why, as it sounds nothing like the rest of the album. Assisted by rappers T.I, Too Short and Twista, Gaga tells her man that she's neither interested in his money or jewels - just his love and his drugs.
Love and drugs appear to be two cornerstones within ARTPOP, coming into play throughout the album, most prominently on its lone ballad, 'Dope'. While she may scream and sound as if she's on the edge of tears for the duration of the song ("I'll keep searching for an answer cause I need you more than dope") she manages to keep it together for the rest of the LP. The S&M dungeon sounding 'Sexxx Dreams' and the triple genre 'Manicure' have been favourites since they debuted at the iTunes Festival back in September. We also get reacquainted with Gaga's other other love, fashion on 'Donatella' and the appropriately titled, 'Fashion!'. Sadly, there's no need for both of these. Most songs about fashion and fashion culture in general end up sounding too similar, as there ain't too many (Fifth) avenues you can travel down lyrically.
Closing the same way the current wave started, the lead single 'Applause' ironically doubles as a fitting curtain closer. It's almost as if we came full circle around that giant orb/thing in between her legs up there. If you're big on the sounds of DJ White Shadow, Zedd and even David Guetta, this is definitely for you. If you like none of the above OR Gaga herself, it's obvious you should steer clear.
But for me, there's not a single Fartpop in sight.
Key Tracks: G.U.Y, Sexxx Dreams, Jewels N' Drugs