“Revival” is Selena Gomez’s second solo album after she released her debut album two years ago. Though she releases her albums like “Keeping up with the Kardashians” episodes, her craft is slowly getting better. This album is filled with more mature and complex lyrics and beats. She is finally open and honest about sex, confidence and young love, though she wrote only one song.
In this album, Gomez attempts to break away from her squeaky-clean, child star image to prove she is an adult. I respect her determination and will, but she is still a horrible vocalist.
The album starts with “Revival,” where Gomez chants some poetic verses. The song infuses a lot of Caribbean and brass beats, mixing them with classical elements. This is obviously Gomez’s form of experimentation. She is trying to channel her inner indie-queen, since the song sounds like one Florence and the Machine or Lana Del Rey would produce.
Unfortunately, at some point, it seemed like she stopped singing and let auto-tune do all the work for the rest of the album. Her singing is less than mediocre, and while the lyrics are pretty amazing, her flat vocals manage to ruin lines like, “I dive into the future / But I’m blinded by the sun / I’m reborn in every moment.”
“Kill Em’ with Kindness” is very similar to her earlier music, with tacky EDM beats thrown in with random lyrics really making the song memorable. This track is the most awkward during the chorus. There is so much choppiness that it makes this song feel like one big hiccup. “Body Heat” is similar. A million things happening at once, paired with an over-reliance on auto-tune, make for a song that just sounds fake.
The entire album isn’t a complete mess — there are a few redeeming qualities. One of the better songs is “Same Old Love,” where the catchy chorus mixes well with hip-hop beats. The song is an open confession about wanting to get rid of old love and try something new, which is something that everyone faces at least once in their lives. “Me and the Rhythm,” arguably the best song from “Revival,” has a catchy chorus and the pop beats will make the song get stuck in anyone’s head, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing in this case.
Though “Revival” is far from stellar, this is Gomez’s way of saying she is finally an adult. The problem is that she worked a little too hard on the music and not enough on her vocals. If she really wants to prove to the world that she is a mature pop star ready to talk about all aspects of life, she has to step up her singing.