Lorde – “Green Light” (Lava, Republic, 2017)
Nearly four years after her debut album was released, Auckland indie-pop sensation Lorde has returned with a triumphant lead single from her much-anticipated second album, Melodrama. The track is poppy and upbeat. On first listen, it may seem like a departure from Lorde’s early hits like “Royals” and “Team.” But behind the soaring piano melody, “Green Light” has all the elements of the alt-pop style Lorde is known for, from the synths and kick drums to the wise-beyond-her-years lyricism. The tonal shift between the song’s haunting refrain and fast-paced chorus is jarring, but that’s exactly what’s made the 20-year-old singer so successful. Very few musicians can make something so weird work so well, especially on a dance track. Long-time fans will probably miss the layered harmonies and obscure poetics of her debut album, Pure Heroine, but overall, “Green Light” is a solid comeback and an exciting taste of what’s to come from Lorde in the next year.
Trial Track: “Green Light”