Album Review: Title

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With two major singles, Meghan Trainor continues her success with the release of her debut album, Title.  The singer-songwriter teamed up with John Legend, Shy Carter, Chris Gelbuda and Jesse Frasure through Epic Records, creating a blend of pop and soul.  The album is a mix of the catchy “All About That Bass” and “Lips Are Movin,” as well as some more intimate ballads that bring out who Trainor really is.

Meghan Trainor is indeed catchy, but there is something else about the messages in her songs that draws me to her.  She’s empowering in a refreshing way that she also manages to make fun.  Though I would not compare her sound to Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off,” the sentiment is very much the same.  Trainor acts as a voice for women, with an attitude or persona of an average girl.  She sings about everyday circumstances and feelings that girls can relate to, but also throws in little quirky quips that guys would certainly find amusing.

Title opens in this vain, with a short intro immediately addressing Trainor’s belief in singing because she loves it and in hopes that her songs will also have an impact.

“Dear Future Husband” follows the ever-popular “All About That Bass,” and demands the respect of women in relationships in full-force, with an in-your-face, undeniable beat.  It acts as a warning and a guide for men, but doesn’t fail to include the fun of relationships.

“Close Your Eyes” is the first slower song on the album.  It might throw some listeners off at first, but it is the first glimpse into Trainor as a true artist, with more talent than just putting out an addictive single.  Though not one of my favorites, it’s another empowering track, telling fans to “Show them what’s beautiful”–making the song a kind of mellow “All About That Bass.”

“3am” is another great track, right from the get-go.  It  tells the relatable story of learning to let go even when you’re lonely and not necessarily thinking clearly.  It seems a bit slower and sounds almost sweet, but the underlying beat keeps you moving along.

“Like I’m Gonna Lose You” is a true ballad, enhanced by the talents of John Legend.  It took me some time to get into this song, but the harmony between the two singers is incredible and wins me over every time.

“Bang Dem Sticks” is less deeply metaphorical, and definitely brings out the more hip-hop Meghan Trainor.  It still plays on the musical metaphor Trainor likes to utilize (i.e. her definition of “bass”). What’s more significant about this song, however, is that it’s fun–a real dance party jam.

“Walkashame” will have you hooked from the first twisted note of saxophone.  You’ll be dancing way before you realize how accurate this song is, especially to college life.  For many, that will make it an even better track.

“Title,” the title track on the album, is another upbeat song with a strong empowering undercurrent.  Again, Trainor demands respect, doing it in a way that is positive both in music and message.  My favorite line has to be, “Don’t call me ‘Boo’ like you’re some kind of ghost.”

“What If I” slows things down again. It brings out Trainor’s vocal talents as a singer and highlighs the more classical use of piano and violins.  It is not my favorite, however, with no real wow factor.

“Lips Are Movin'” is followed by “No Good For You,” a song with a message I love.  It’s a song for your best friend, and frankly not something you hear much of anymore.  I like that Trainor stepped out and acknowledged the importance of friendship, even taking on a sort of motherly role.  It also helps that the track’s sound is addictive and puts you in a good mood.

“Mr. Almost” has many of the same elements as previous songs like “Dear Future Husband” and “Title,” both musically and lyrically.  Despite this, “Mr. Almost” is still an exciting song and does not feel repetitive or overdone.  It’s another song for the dreamer and the dance party.

“My Selfish Heart” seems to slip through the cracks each time, not truly standing out.  Once I do listen, however, I am captivated by the beat.  Lyrically it’s a bit sad, but also quite mature as Trainor tells of letting go of a love and wishing him well despite it all.

“Credit” is a favorite, hands down.  Again, it’s a bit sad, as Trainor sings about an old love and his new flame.  But the song is really about buoying up the speaker herself, saying how she made her ex better.  It’s a different concept, but even if it wasn’t, you couldn’t deny the hook of instrumentals that support the words.

Overall, Title is quite impressive.  I was pleasantly surprised by the range Meghan Trainor demonstrates as an artist.  I love “All About That Bass,” but Title offers so much more from this spunky, encouraging singer.  It’s intriguing to see how much she believes in herself and is really willing to put that out there.  She definitely deserves to be recognized for more than her popular summer hit.

Rating: 4.5/5

Recommended:
“Walkashame”
“Credit”
“Title”

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