I’ve had a crush on Gwen Stefani since her No Doubt days: the punk attitude, different shades of hair and ability to sit with the boys and
proclaim, “I’m Just a Girl.”
Gwen Stefani now is a mentor on ‘The Voice,” a mother of three, divorced, and dating country artist Blake Shelton. But that hasn’t stopped her music career.
Gwen released her third solo, full studio album entitled “This Is What The Truth Feels Like” on March 18, 2016.
She has admitted the divorce with Gavin Rossdale has impacted her life tremendously and the content of songs on the new album reflect that. On the other hand, her media filled relationship with Blake Shelton has also been an influence.
There are strong songs on the album like “Make Me Like You,” where we are reminded of electric pop dance songs from “Love.Angel.Music.Baby”—the album that gave us “Hollaback Girl” and the Tokoyo inspired clothing line.
Some of the weakest songs are “Red Flag” and “Asking 4 It” (featuring Fetty Wap).
Songs like “Truth” remind us of “4 In The Morning” where Gwen shines in explaining how hard it is to let go on a love that has repeatedly hurt you, but finding someone new you’re willing to take a chance on.
Blake Shelton has reportedly said his favorite song is “Rare,” where Gwen closes the album by singing about finding the the special someone who changes the course of life for you. Gwen and Blake share the similar heartbreak from previous spouses who cheated on them.
The album takes too many twists and turns around songs about heartbreak, sending cheeky pictures, attempts to being an LA party song, and professing love so rare that gives little cohesiveness.
“This Is What The Truth Feels Like”is an attempt to explain heartbreak through different modes of songwriting, but lacks ingenuity.
It breaks my heart to listen to an artist that I admired for years release such a confusing, weak album. Perhaps I had high expectations considering it’s been a decade since she’s released “The Sweet Escape.” The singles from “This Is What The Truth Feels Like” will run the radio, but by no means does the totality of the album leave an impression.