CUZ I LOVE YOU (Atlantic Records)
Just a few days into 2019, Lizzo sprung into the music world with the release of her first hit Juice – what is bound to be one of the most popular songs of the year. Since then, her debut album has been awaited with immense anticipation. Cuz I Love You is packed full of energy and empowerment. It plays as if the up-and-coming Minneapolis singer is performing directly in front of you. Lizzo balances retro, feel-good tunes that would have been perfect for an 80s disco with self-empowerment anthems like Soulmate, praising the woman “in the mirror”. The album kicks off with a powerful a cappella that is swiftly backed by a burly full band and a playful piano accompaniment. Cuz I Love You builds as Lizzo crescendos into a universal affirmation about the confusion of love. The album’s buoyant sound is stripped back at Jerome, where a slow percussive beat and almost mocking vocals tells the story of a one-way-love. It is at Tempo, however, that the record completely shifts. The electronic rhythm features Missy Elliott, making it nostalgic of 2000s hip-hop with a sticky, deep baseline and repetitive lyrics. After a powerful range of songs, the album closes on a surprising note. Lingerie – a seductive RnB groove – is stripped-back, delicate and sensitive.