BEYONCÉ - act i RENAISSANCE + "MY HOUSE"

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My best friends are in Milan and I made them stand in the rain just in case she ended up performing.

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She didn't.

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I had a dream (or let’s say nightmare, literally a nightmare) that Beyonce dropped the visuals for act 1 after the tour and all the videos for the tracks were just those bog standard tour video compilation things that popstars used to do. Christ, I need the actual visuals to drop sometime soon please!
 
This album is utterly spectacular, I think. It's a small wonder that nothing Beyoncé ever releases sounds bad; miles can vary on whether or not the songs themselves are good (spoiler: they are 99% of the time) but her quality control has been insane over the last ten years. Everything has always sounded rich and dense and expensive and meticulous and Renaissance is an apex of all of that. Maybe the best pop music has sounded in a good while in an era where it feels like a little bit of craftmanship is getting lost. I'm sure things will course correct amid eventual overcorrection (as it always does) but the album is just a treat to gorge on. I play it multiple times a day all the way through almost automatically like breathing.

Beyoncé's walked a fine tightrope in the last decade. Pulling up and out of the game has undoubtedly proved benificial and has perhaps been the thing to truly cement her as a legend to a generation... but you can lose a little something in that rigid imperial positioning. Her albums have of course been amazing labours of love... but also Important, and when things are Important they can feel a little heavy and... maybe a touch academic. It wasn't really something I thought about until I started to really dig into this album. We've had the bops and the swag and the cool, of course, but they've felt secondary to other purposes. Like I wouldn't describe much of what she's done over this time as... light, or fun. At least primilarly. And again, that's fine! In fact, more than fine, it's been some of the best music of the century. But I find it interesting that this album, despite maybe being her most studied by far, is also quite easily her happiest, warmest, lightest effort to date. Starlight bursting from every seam, and genuine food for the soul. You can even hear it in some of Beyoncé's most expressive vocals to date; the fun she's having. "BREAK MY SOUL" would have crumbled in the hands of someone less talented than Beyoncé, but luckily it's in the hands of one of the best singers to ever live, and she's vibing, so.

A genuine gift all over, really, given earnestly and easily. To the communities it openly celebrates and pays homage to after decades of those communities celebrating and paying homage to her, to everyone who has been left emotionally ravaged and raw by the last few years, and... to just anyone tripping into it needing lifted. It feels like acknowledgement and validation, but in Beyoncé's own way. And that makes it all the more special as well.

The whole project has been a great soundtrack to me finally managing to repair my severed connections with enjoying hapy music, which I hadn't even realised were damaged until they started to heal. Y'all haven't lived until you've been on a yacht in the middle of the North Aegean Sea (@Vasilios), on your fourth can of Alfa, the sun is beating down, your back is BURNT because the sea has been reflecting the sun onto you in the shade of the canopy, and "BREAK MY SOUL" is playing for the fifth time that day. Of course my life has maybe also decided to take its foot off my neck for a while, but the two have worked beautifully in tandem. A project that is not only unimpeachably good and pure but also uplifting, kind, silly, and wildly fun. I have memories pressed into every track; something that is to be cherished as it becomes more and more of a sporadic event as time winds on.

Anyway. It's late at night and these are just some jumbled thoughts that have been swirling around in my head recently and... where better to put them?

Album of the year, probably. I hope you're all well.
 
This album is utterly spectacular, I think. It's a small wonder that nothing Beyoncé ever releases sounds bad; miles can vary on whether or not the songs themselves are good (spoiler: they are 99% of the time) but her quality control has been insane over the last ten years. Everything has always sounded rich and dense and expensive and meticulous and Renaissance is an apex of all of that. Maybe the best pop music has sounded in a good while in an era where it feels like a little bit of craftmanship is getting lost. I'm sure things will course correct amid eventual overcorrection (as it always does) but the album is just a treat to gorge on. I play it multiple times a day all the way through almost automatically like breathing.

Beyoncé's walked a fine tightrope in the last decade. Pulling up and out of the game has undoubtedly proved benificial and has perhaps been the thing to truly cement her as a legend to a generation... but you can lose a little something in that rigid imperial positioning. Her albums have of course been amazing labours of love... but also Important, and when things are Important they can feel a little heavy and... maybe a touch academic. It wasn't really something I thought about until I started to really dig into this album. We've had the bops and the swag and the cool, of course, but they've felt secondary to other purposes. Like I wouldn't describe much of what she's done over this time as... light, or fun. At least primilarly. And again, that's fine! In fact, more than fine, it's been some of the best music of the century. But I find it interesting that this album, despite maybe being her most studied by far, is also quite easily her happiest, warmest, lightest effort to date. Starlight bursting from every seam, and genuine food for the soul. You can even hear it in some of Beyoncé's most expressive vocals to date; the fun she's having. "BREAK MY SOUL" would have crumbled in the hands of someone less talented than Beyoncé, but luckily it's in the hands of one of the best singers to ever live, and she's vibing, so.

A genuine gift all over, really, given earnestly and easily. To the communities it openly celebrates and pays homage to after decades of those communities celebrating and paying homage to her, to everyone who has been left emotionally ravaged and raw by the last few years, and... to just anyone tripping into it needing lifted. It feels like acknowledgement and validation, but in Beyoncé's own way. And that makes it all the more special as well.

The whole project has been a great soundtrack to me finally managing to repair my severed connections with enjoying hapy music, which I hadn't even realised were damaged until they started to heal. Y'all haven't lived until you've been on a yacht in the middle of the North Aegean Sea (@Vasilios), on your fourth can of Alfa, the sun is beating down, your back is BURNT because the sea has been reflecting the sun onto you in the shade of the canopy, and "BREAK MY SOUL" is playing for the fifth time that day. Of course my life has maybe also decided to take its foot off my neck for a while, but the two have worked beautifully in tandem. A project that is not only unimpeachably good and pure but also uplifting, kind, silly, and wildly fun. I have memories pressed into every track; something that is to be cherished as it becomes more and more of a sporadic event as time winds on.

Anyway. It's late at night and these are just some jumbled thoughts that have been swirling around in my head recently and... where better to put them?

Album of the year, probably. I hope you're all well.
Oh, and the absolute off the scale levels of CUNT that is the Queens Remix. When I tell you I SHIT.
 
This album is utterly spectacular, I think. It's a small wonder that nothing Beyoncé ever releases sounds bad; miles can vary on whether or not the songs themselves are good (spoiler: they are 99% of the time) but her quality control has been insane over the last ten years. Everything has always sounded rich and dense and expensive and meticulous and Renaissance is an apex of all of that. Maybe the best pop music has sounded in a good while in an era where it feels like a little bit of craftmanship is getting lost. I'm sure things will course correct amid eventual overcorrection (as it always does) but the album is just a treat to gorge on. I play it multiple times a day all the way through almost automatically like breathing.

Beyoncé's walked a fine tightrope in the last decade. Pulling up and out of the game has undoubtedly proved benificial and has perhaps been the thing to truly cement her as a legend to a generation... but you can lose a little something in that rigid imperial positioning. Her albums have of course been amazing labours of love... but also Important, and when things are Important they can feel a little heavy and... maybe a touch academic. It wasn't really something I thought about until I started to really dig into this album. We've had the bops and the swag and the cool, of course, but they've felt secondary to other purposes. Like I wouldn't describe much of what she's done over this time as... light, or fun. At least primilarly. And again, that's fine! In fact, more than fine, it's been some of the best music of the century. But I find it interesting that this album, despite maybe being her most studied by far, is also quite easily her happiest, warmest, lightest effort to date. Starlight bursting from every seam, and genuine food for the soul. You can even hear it in some of Beyoncé's most expressive vocals to date; the fun she's having. "BREAK MY SOUL" would have crumbled in the hands of someone less talented than Beyoncé, but luckily it's in the hands of one of the best singers to ever live, and she's vibing, so.

A genuine gift all over, really, given earnestly and easily. To the communities it openly celebrates and pays homage to after decades of those communities celebrating and paying homage to her, to everyone who has been left emotionally ravaged and raw by the last few years, and... to just anyone tripping into it needing lifted. It feels like acknowledgement and validation, but in Beyoncé's own way. And that makes it all the more special as well.

The whole project has been a great soundtrack to me finally managing to repair my severed connections with enjoying hapy music, which I hadn't even realised were damaged until they started to heal. Y'all haven't lived until you've been on a yacht in the middle of the North Aegean Sea (@Vasilios), on your fourth can of Alfa, the sun is beating down, your back is BURNT because the sea has been reflecting the sun onto you in the shade of the canopy, and "BREAK MY SOUL" is playing for the fifth time that day. Of course my life has maybe also decided to take its foot off my neck for a while, but the two have worked beautifully in tandem. A project that is not only unimpeachably good and pure but also uplifting, kind, silly, and wildly fun. I have memories pressed into every track; something that is to be cherished as it becomes more and more of a sporadic event as time winds on.

Anyway. It's late at night and these are just some jumbled thoughts that have been swirling around in my head recently and... where better to put them?

Album of the year, probably. I hope you're all well.
Well put. Glad you liked it.

But where is your Chromatica Bally review?!
 
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