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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Review: Miley Cyrus’ free album really, really failed

International pop superstar Miley Cyrus has become a household name in recent years. The daughter of ’90s country superstar Billy Ray Cyrus, Miley Cyrus has spent the last decade or so climbing the ranks in the world of entertainment.

Beginning as the main character on the Disney Channel sitcom “Hannah Montana”, she began writing cutesy, catchy, kid-friendly pop tunes and also did some more radio-friendly solo work in the late 2000s. Shortly thereafter, she disappeared for a few years, and made a shocking return as an edgy, raunchy, explicit pop star­—a complete 180 from what she was previously doing, and as far from kid-friendly possible.

Her new revealing style, 2013 LP Bangerz and some disastrous stage performances that earned her massive amounts of negative press branded this new Miley. However, she ignored the backlash against her new image, continuing on with a world tour, collaborating with big-name hip-hop artists, and even more rebellious and raunchy acts.

Cyrus made this evident as ever when she hosted the MTV Video Music Awards on Aug. 30. Featuring some horrendous outfits, over-the-top drug and sex references, and beef with Nicki Minaj, it was clear that audiences had begun to see Cyrus’s raunchiness and edginess for what it truly is—a terribly corny ploy to get attention.

Cyrus kept up the facade after the VMAs. At the conclusion of the broadcast, after a dizzying performance, Cyrus announced her new LP, Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz, released for free online. Anybody who was unfortunate enough to listen to this record was in for a musical roller coaster full of horrifying, ear-piercing surprises.

Right off the bat, Cyrus makes it clear that she wants to dig deeper into indie, experimental, psychedelic and alternative sounds, pairing up with alternative and psychedelic veterans, The Flaming Lips. She also paired up with producer Mike Will Made It and featured a couple guest vocalists, including Big Sean, Sarah Barthel of Phantogram, and even singer-songwriter Ariel Pink. Sadly, these talented musicians and producers were no match for Cyrus’s lack of talent.

The album begins with the song “Dooo it!” and wastes no time convincing the listener that they are in for 90 minutes of hell. The instrumentals in this song are chaotic and unorganized, and not in a positive way. Cyrus screeches on and on about marijuana, not caring and peace all over the track, concluding with some nonsensical gibberish about sex.

An appalling music video pairs the song, featuring Cyrus’s face drenched with milk, glitter, syrup and an array of other gross substances. It will make any sane viewer want to curl into the fetal position.

The second song, “Karen Don’t Be Sad,” features a quieter keyboard beat that hardly changes for the entire length of the song. Cyrus’s voice sounds flat and uninspired, creating an abysmal, sleep-inducing track. The album continues with the song “The Floyd Song (Sunrise),” which is equally as boring, with Cyrus sounding a little louder, but somehow managing to sound even worse. She has no control in her voice.

The album delves further into the abyss with the tracks “Something About Space Dude,” which is nothing but gibberish with another boring, repetitive instrumental, and “Space Boots,” a generic, sugary song about a breakup paired with marijuana use, taking a very similar lyrical path to Tove Lo’s “Habits (Stay High).”

Further down the line, the song “Bang Me Box” serves as the true pinnacle of this album. Cyrus’s attempt at a sex song fails miserably, as her voice does not sound even remotely intimate. The lyrics are incredibly vulgar, but they fail to achieve intimacy as well, which makes this song sound just like another one of Cyrus’ ploys for attention and controversy.

The album really does conclude with a bang, with the songs “Pablow the Blowfish” and “Twinkle Song.” In “Pablow the Blowfish,” Cyrus blabbers on about how fish are her friends, mourning and proclaiming her love for this single sea creature. It’s simply bizarre.

At long last, the grand finale, “Twinkle Song,” arrives, but it does not let the listener off easily. A terrible piano time signature combined with Cyrus reaching into her upper register and sounding like nails on a chalkboard definitely reminds the listener that this nightmare of an album will stay with them for a long, long time.

It’s understandable that Cyrus is trying to change her style and experiment with new genres, but it just fell apart completely on this record. Cyrus makes it painfully obvious that she lacks musicianship, even when working with talented artists. It was exhausting and painful listening experience.

Rating: F

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