With a decade's worth of writers block, pop legend Gwen Stefani is back with her newest album, This Is What the Truth Feels Like. Her recent divorce from Gavin Rossdale, Bush's ex lead singer, and flirty new relationship with country singer, Blake Shelton, has definitely stirred up a lot of emotions in Gwen, making This Is What the Truth Feels Like one of her most personal albums to date. It can be described as a balance between 80's new wave and today's pop radio, a duo that go seamlessly together, despite a few misses.
The album launches off with the track "Misery." The nostalgia kicks in hard on this track, with Depeche Mode-esque synth and funky beat. The lyrics "Put me out of my misery/ hurry up come see me/ Enough, enough of this suffering/ hurry up come see me" display Gwen's feelings of longing for someone you know you shouldn't have, and then giving into the temptation to see them, making this song a hit that everyone can relate to.
"Where Would I Be," feels much more like Gwen's No Doubt days, with a reggae beat and tropical feel to it. This song is cute and light, and an obvious ode to her new love. She sings "Yeah you're putting in overtime/ I scored, you are the prize," making this the perfect tune for summer love with the convertible top down.
The tracks "Naughty," and "Send Me A Picture" were unfortunately not up to par with the rest of this album, for several reasons. While the dreamy synth in "Send Me A Picture," was nice to listen to, and "Naughty" had some okay moments, the concepts are seriously lacking. Both songs lack originality, and the cliche lyrics are worn out and tired, making these the duds in this album.
The fourth track, "Make Me Like You" is possibly the closest thing we get on this album to Gwen's previous solo ones. The catchy beat is addictive, and immediately sweeps you off your feet. Over a steady beat Gwen sings "Why'd you have to go and make me like you/ Yeah this is a feeling I'm not used to/ Why'd you have to go and make me like you/ I'm so mad at you cause now you got me missing you" and it is impossible not to dance to.
The album ends with the song "Rare," which is smooth, warm, and raw. The lyrics "I am broken, I am insecure/ Complicated, oh yeah that's for sure/ I feel worthless, I've been hurt so bad/ I get nervous you won't love me back" really show just how vulnerable Gwen is willing to be, and will wrap listeners up like a warm blanket. The honest, unapologetic lyrics may be her best ones yet, and make this star all the more endearing.