Pink: Beautiful Trauma

Posted October 27, 2017 by in Pop



2.5/ 5


Genre: ,
Producer: , , , , , , , ,
Genre: Pop, pop-rock
Producer: Jack Antonoff, busbee, Pink, Oscar Holter, Tobias Jesso Jr., Greg Kurstin, Steve Mac, Billy Mann, Max Martin, Mattman & Robin, Christian Medice, Shellback, The Struts
Label: RCA
Format: Digital download, compact disc, vinyl
Time: 51:08
Release Date: 13 October 2017
Spin This: "What About Us," "But We Lost It"


"What About Us" should rise up as a complimentary reprise to her most memorable "Just Give Me a Reason."


Saapy lyrics on the mammoth amount of album filler, Nem's way-to-poppy appearance on "Revenge" and the long line of calm ballads drain much of the disc's energy

Pink gets more ballad-heavy, more acoustic and even a little distracted on newest disc

by J Matthew Cobb
Full Article

Pink gets more ballad-heavy, more acoustic and even a little distracted on newest disc 

pink-02When Pink (stylized P!nk) dropped her last album, 2012’s The Truth About Love, she had groomed herself into a versatile pop titan possessing big career-defying anthems (“Just Give Me a Reason,” Try”) and trusted mega-pop party starters (“Blow Me (One Last Kiss))”. Things are a bit relaxed, almost tepid, on her most recent musical venture, Beautiful Trauma. Although she returns to most of the same producers from her last effort (Shellback, Max Martin, Greg Kurstin), this one, her seventh to date, strongly dials back the crunk. You can’t really tell it from hearing the opening title track. It’s a nice start, going back and forth from nostalgic synths to brash synth pop simmering with melodic piano, even as she entertains the ups and downs of a difficult relationship (“the pill I keep taking, the nightmare I’m waking…my perfect rock bottom”).

But as the album plays onward, it’s obvious that things slow up a little more than her usual, thanks to the incorporation of more swooning acoustic piano-heavy ballads. “Barbies,” a personal aching back to simpler, innocent times, and “But We Lost It” are wisely rendered. The latter, full of heavy strings and AC haze, is oozing with beauty. But it is “What About Us” that stands out as the album’s greatest salvo. It doesn’t measure up to “Just Give Me a Reason,” but its classic buildup, done in the way of drum-thumping radio pop, provides enough feelgood moments to grant it a spot on the next Now That’s What I Call Music compilation.

Even when Pink wants to liven things up with a halfway cameo from Eminem on “Revenge,” it seems like a mere copy-and-paste effort. The rosy beats just don’t gel well with this brand of commercial and tamer ‘Nem. He’s not even believable when he cranks up the vitriol towards the end when rap-singing “You’re a whore/This is war.”

And the mistakes just piles up: The rhyming and flow on “For Now” seems sloppy; the disco buzz of “Secrets” doesn’t exactly jive well with “da-da-da-dah-do-do-do” chant and the fragile lyrics (“Everybody’s got a secret/It’s written on my face”); “I Am Here” blunders by trying to blend Motown with throwback Mumford & Sons and a gentrified gospel choir. Thankfully “Where We Go” sits perfectly halfway through the album. It’s possibly the superglue holding this disc together and saving it from a climatic implosion. It traces the memorable hooks of Kesha’s “Tik Tok” but manages to put a prominent bluesy guitar out front.

Pink is still in decent form, an underrated and underestimated belter (best proven on the intimate closing track “You Get My Love”) that hits notes with the effervescence of Kelly Clarkson. This would’ve been a mighty triumph if only this crawl of an adventure wasn’t so bogged down with a barrage of grown folks’ ballads and with the score of mistakes embedded in the album’s most obvious filler. And it also seems as if the fun under the big Pink tent has been placed on an indefinite hiatus. No more “getting the party started” this time around.

About the Author

J Matthew Cobb

Managing editor of HiFi Magazine


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