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Gwen Stefani: This Is What the Truth Feels Like review

via mirror.co.uk

via mirror.co.uk

by Chandler Patrick, Sports Editor

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Album Title: This is What the Truth Feels Like

Record Label: Interscope Records

Release Date: March 18, 2016

Rating:  9/10

Since “Sweet Escape” was released a decade ago in 2006, Gwen Stefani has woven her way in and out of the music scene.

In April of 2014, Stefani took Christina Aguilera’s place as a judge on “The Voice.” Between a messy divorce with ex-husband Gavin Rossdale and a new found love with fellow voice judge Blake Shelton, the new album runs over her ups and downs throughout the last few years. For a mom of three, a return to the studio is in and of itself a pretty honorable act.

Now, I will admit: Stefani’s first album “Love, Angel, Music, Baby” nestles in my heart just a bit as being the first CD I ever bought with my own money. So, this album had quite a few expectations after the flop of “Sweet Escape” in 2006. Needless to say, it did not disappoint whatsoever. The album is more coherent and meaningful. “Sweet Escape” fits in with its ‘06 time frame, but “Truth” slips flawlessly into today’s era of music.

Physically, Stefani’s album cover reveals the 46-year-old’s flawless complexion and touch of raw emotion with the addition of her own handwriting. The single releases were accompanied by their own covers as well, each showcasing that whimsical yet personal feel.

It seems that Stefani has reintroduced herself with the music in this album, but still has that hint of Harajuku girl long-time fans have missed. Music has always been a way of soothing emotions for Stefani clear back since her No Doubt days, and doesn’t fail in really taking the listener for a ride.

The album starts off with a tear jerking “Misery” and “You’re My Favorite,” showcasing the first part of the grieving process during heartbreak. It gradually progresses to a flirty toned “Send Me A Picture” which by far has the catchiest, stand-up-and-dance beat you will hear on the album. “Used To Love You” is at the top of the list for best songs on the soundtrack by perfectly explaining that tearing feeling between remembering why you used to love someone and why you don’t anymore; plus, Stefani rocks the whole “girl power” vibe. The album is topped off with songs like “Me Without You” and “Rare” as a final salute to the feelings but now still facing the journey of being loved while still slightly broken: a fear that every post-heartbreakee has.  It is a journey from the sadness to the sunshine, with some serious inclinations to bob your head, tap your foot or drum along on your steering wheel.

Stefani has reintroduced the concept of pop being something other than garbage and that it can in fact have a meaning to it. With the grief finally off her chest and dealt with, it’s clear Stefani feels better than she ever has before, and I am digging the new and improved artist.

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Gwen Stefani: This Is What the Truth Feels Like review