Lorde - Melodrama
Critic Score
Based on 41 reviews
2017 Ratings: #3 / 876
Year End Rank: #2
User Score
2017 Ratings: #2
Liked by 146 people
June 16, 2017 / Release Date
LP / Format
Universal / Label
Art Pop, Pop / Genres
lorde.co.nz / Website
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CRITIC REVIEWS

100
DIY

Melodrama's acceptance of taking what you can get while never failing to reach for the stars makes it one of the smartest pop records of the decade.

100
Entertainment Weekly
Just when you think you’re nearing the end of Lorde’s journey, her words pull you back in for another listen. It’s a puzzle that’ll keep you busy long after the party is over.
100
AllMusic

This balance between discovery and reflection gives Melodrama a tension, but the addition of genuine, giddy pleasure ... isn't merely a progression for Lorde, it's what gives the album multiple dimensions.

100
NME
It’s a rudely excellent album, introspective without ever being indulgent, OTT in all the right ways, honest and brave, full of brilliant songs with lyrics to chew over for months.
100
Pretty Much Amazing
Self-care has allowed Lorde to make something extraordinary and authentic, something that takes you by the hand and assures you that you can survive and thrive in the same sea of emotion.
100
The Line of Best Fit

On Melodrama, Lorde invites all of us to join in her anguished party of the damned, convincing her believers that if we just keep on dancing the ills of the world won’t be able to catch up to us. And for now, that is a faith promising enough to get totally lost in.

100
A.V. Club

What Melodrama confirms most of all is Lorde’s uncanny ability to drill down so precisely on grand emotional themes that would fell lesser songwriters. Tackling a bad breakup certainly isn’t new in pop music, but it’s delivered here with an honesty an energy that is uniquely her own.

100
Tiny Mix Tapes

Melodrama overwhelms me. It reaches me at that weird and fragile center. The part of me I consider irreconcilable.

100
The Telegraph

Here is an original, emotional, intellectual, imaginatively audacious singer-songwriter operating at the highest artistic level yet putting it across as easy-access modern mainstream pop. Melodrama deserves to be a blockbuster.

100
Dork

‘Melodrama’ is quite probably the album of the year.

100
The Young Folks

As cinematic and atmospheric as Radiohead yet uniquely modern and youthful, Melodrama is the strongest and most complete album experience in pop music.

95
Northern Transmissions

Lorde is an artist truly reborn on this record, bigger and more club-ready than ever in her loud beats and more forward-moving sound ... Showing she’s matured as an artist and more importantly as a person, Lorde hasn’t let her fame affect her sharp wit or cynicism in the slightest.

90
Slant Magazine

Whether it's a party record disguised as a breakup album or a breakup album disguised as a party record, it's cathartic, dramatic, and everything else you could want an album titled Melodrama to be.

90
Sputnikmusic
A bold and colorful magnum opus that marks an almost unbeatable personal milestone for Lorde.
90
Loud and Quiet

She seeks to articulate the unbearable emotional heaviness of being on the brink of adulthood, and of all the yearning, identity crises and self-examination that that entails. That she manages it with sincerity despite her status as an established global pop star success story, with triumphalism despite being so audibly let down by the reality, and with authority despite still not having completed the journey herself is what makes ‘Melodrama’ such a compelling experience.

90
Exclaim!

Lorde is masterful at making music that digs within the deepest recesses of your heart and brings to the surface the feelings that you thought you'd forgotten about. Melodrama is the perfect outlet to hash (and dance) those emotions out to.

90
musicOMH

Melodrama delivers everything pop music should, but yet it manages to find more. As an album it is unlikely to be bettered in 2017.

90
PopMatters

Melodrama finds Lorde producing the best work of her career so far, crafting an ambitious and uncompromising pop statement suffused with intensely personal artistry. Both jubilant and frightened, insecure and proud, the album establishes her as a pop star on her terms.

90
No Ripcord

Melodrama isn't strictly about inebriation. It's about growing up and growing out of love, where the excitement of a relationship fades and what's left can't sustain itself. This album explores this segment of adulthood in all its joy, despair, confusion and revelry. And it does it with stunning introspection and musical freshness.

90
The 405
It’s a soundtrack for the delirious highs and also the sobering, sombre lows when the glasses break and the lights turn on.
90
Drowned in Sound
She is intensely self-aware and, accordingly, is able to take all the inelegancies of youth – the stumbles out of nightclub doors, the clothes strewn across the bedroom floor, how apocalyptic that first heartbreak feels – and turn them into something exquisite.
90
Highsnobiety

Using a loose thematic through line of a house party over the course of a single night, Melodrama covers a wide range of intense emotions without ever once falling victim to, well, melodrama.

89
GIGsoup

It is a brilliantly well-crafted electro-acoustic, synth drenched exploration of the internal factory of emotion - a 21st century masterpiece.

88
Pitchfork
Lorde captures emotions like none other. Her second album is a masterful study of being a young woman, a sleek and humid pop record full of grief and hedonism, crafted with the utmost care and wisdom.
85
Under The Radar

Melodrama's swirls of strings and bursts of glimmering synths show a pop star in her prime.  Between rage, elation, and all of the mistakes in-between, Lorde is more self-aware than she's ever been.

85
Prefix

She’s reasserted her status as today’s ultimate alt-pop artist with a record that balances the contemporary with the classic in typically immaculate style.

83
Consequence of Sound
The 11-song album is more “drama” in the screenplay sense than anything else, probably because as Frank Ocean is for R&B, Lorde aspires to be pop’s poet laureate more than anything else.
80
The Independent
Fuelled by a black humour that’s almost become her trademark, there’s heartbreak and ecstasy, desire, fear, uncertainty, acting on impulse, making mistakes and (maybe) learning from them. And those are tunes we can definitely dance to.
80
The Guardian
For all its odd misfires, it makes a great deal of the stuff that sits alongside it in the charts look pretty feeble by comparison. If that sounds like faint praise, it isn’t meant to be: if it was easy to make hugely successful mainstream pop music as smart as this, then everybody would be at it. And they patently aren’t.
80
Rolling Stone

She has said the album's conceit is a house party and its unfolding dramas; indeed, Pure Heroine's cool snark is now a hotter passion, in its millennial-skeptical way.

80
Crack Magazine

Confused, unsettled and ultimately optimistic – Melodrama is the smartest pop record of the year so far.

80
The Skinny

Melodrama is overblown sensationalism, and the sound of exposing every single thing without flinching. Every dark thought, every secret hope, every lurking fear, all soundtracked by uncompromising pop maximalism.

80
The Observer

This resulting work is hefty enough to tick industry boxes, and just weird enough to intrigue; a qualified success.

80
Spectrum Culture

Melodrama is rightly earning raves, and will go down as one of the better pop albums of the decade.

80
FLOOD Magazine

In an age of army-sized writing teams crushing any sense of person on most major label releases, Lorde exists as a disarmingly legitimate personality.

80
Albumism

At its broken heart, Melodrama is what a breakup sounds like. With all the heartache, laments, moments of melancholy and hopes of moving on intact. Growing pains and strains. Life, love and stains. At once a partner to—and antidote for—loneliness, it is a strong outing for an artist still embracing her creative journey.

80
The Arts Desk

Her self-perceptive wryness, tinged with introversion, is still apparent, but Melodrama seems to glide in on a cool wave of self-assurance. Where her 16-year-old self was unsure, sardonic or chaotic, here she finds a balance between revealing some parts of herself and covering up others.

80
The Sydney Morning Herald
Lorde isn't unaware of her patterns but is neither afraid of them nor worried about breaking from them. It's all done on her terms. Which makes for a particularly 2017 album, in the best possible way.
75
Paste

Where Pure Heroine was her global, future-forward debut, Melodrama is the red-eyed, no-rules afterparty, where the lost and loveless go for comfort.

70
The Needle Drop

On her sophomore album Melodrama, Lorde makes a few Top 40 concessions, but shows a ton of promise with the stylistic and formal risks she does take.

exception
85
This is an album I have been looking forward to for over 2 years. Each year that passed after Pure Heroine released, I became more and more nervous for what was to come. From the work on the Hunger Games soundtrack that Lorde did and her feature on Disclosure's newest album, the music that was released by the New Zealand native was spotty and inconsistent. But then she dropped Green Light, the opening track from Melodrama, earlier this year. It was a little generic and sounded like almost ... read more
oh
100
MY 900TH RATING AND 300TH REVIEW!!!!!!

Melodrama possibly is one of the best pop albums of all time. I remember listening to this album a lot in 2017, and the first time I heard it I didn't really like it. Whether it was the loud beat on Homemade Dynomite or the weird screeching sounds on Hard Feelings, my opinions have completely changed since then. This album has some of the best songwriting Lorde has ever done. Like on Homemade Dynomite the lyric "Might get your friend to drive, but he ... read more
MattsReviews
96
I only need to describe this album with 3 words... Pop done right. This is an essential pop album to listen to and one of the best to come out of the genre.
hycis
87
This is absolutely wonderful! It sounds natural, unique and extremely pleasant. There are no words to describe how well-done this is. The production is flawless it brings new elements throughout the album, which turns it into something as huge as possible. The composition is clear, and its lyrical structure is adequate. Simply marvelous.
KIDWITHGUNs
91
POWERHOUSE

I fell in love with the atmosphere and the energy she gives off, plenty of replay value too.

It's like Billie Eillish, but Lorde wasn't born yesterday
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Track List

  1. Green Light
  2. Sober
  3. Homemade Dynamite
  4. The Louvre
  5. Liability
  6. Hard Feelings/Loveless
  7. Sober II (Melodrama)
  8. Writer In the Dark
  9. Supercut
  10. Liability (Reprise)
  11. Perfect Places
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Added on: March 2, 2017