Tove Lo - Sunshine Kitty
I honestly don't know what happened to Tove Lo. The "Stay High" artists was one of my favorites when her first record Queen of the Clouds first burst onto the scene. She was an edgy, pot smoking pop artists making music that was cutting as well as catchy. her music was always slightly explicit, but since that first album it has slipped into pure indulgence. Each subsequent track has felt more drug fueled and less emotionally connected. "Glad He's Gone" a song about a friends breakup has these lines that are extraneous and unimportant to the track itself. Instead of deep tracks filled with rich tones and slow burns this record sort of bops along. There seems to be this sentiment of empowerment and sexual fluidity that Tove Lo has been obsessed with over the past couple of records. Every song either tries to flip the gender script or portray Tove as finding power above the fray. It's not a "bad" message, in fact it's a wonderful one, but they way she keeps going back to this same well over and over again begins to feel really tired. She wants to portray this soaked in sex and drugs style that comes across as so clunky. It's like someone trying molly for the first time and not being able to shut up about how good it is. It seems Tove has fallen into a lifestyle that she thinks is incredibly interesting, but from the outside just looks like run of the mill excess. Are you wearing minimal clothing and taking sexy Polaroids with other women to post to Instagram? Well then you may just have a Tove Lo album in you.
The problem is this isn't a personality, this isn't a new or different way of thinking, it's just generic party music for a person who seems to never leave the club. This would also be fine if that was the end of it. I happen to love disco and dance music that allows you to shut your brain off and dance through the music. This however is not that; it's half thought ideas clouded by smoke and drug haze. Do I think Tove Lo is loving the life she is leading? Absolutely. Are there things that some people might find interesting on this record? Certainly. However as a whole the 14 tracks feel so one note, and so generic that it looses any steam it may have generated. This could be dismissed as a one off, but this has been the direction Tove Lo has been taking her career and she doesn't seem all that interested in changing. Even the production fails her here, it's so minimal and almost refuses to build. "Jacques" is one of those songs that is house inspired, but almost misses the point of house music all together. It has to shift and morph to be good, not just one note throughout. I like Tove Lo and I think she has some great music in her, this direction though seems to be getting worse and worse. When you have an album as diverse and complex as Charli XCX's most recent one was, it really puts Sunshine Kitty ins stark contrast of who it could have gone wrong. Hopefully it's a blip in the road for Tove Lo, but at this point it doesn't seem like it.
6.2 out of 10