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The Spectator

The student news site of Lake Forest Academy

The Spectator

A review of 2023’s newest albums

Photo by @travisscott on Instagram
Travis Scott’s album Utopia.

For All The Dogs- Drake

Drake’s album, “For All The Dogs,” reflects a rapid release pattern that has marked his work thus far, but its reception is mixed. The project has a lot of great new songs like “Slime You Out”, “8 AM in Charlotte” and “First Person Shooter” (feat. J. Cole). However, the album’s lack of focus and occasional throwaway tracks contribute to its overall inconsistency. Drake attempts a blend of R&B and rap, nodding to his roots and diverse influences, but the execution feels clunky. The album’s 90-minute runtime feels far too long, and it gets boring after a while. Though “For All The Dogs” has some good moments, it is mostly a boring and forgettable album.

Utopia-Travis Scott

“Utopia” is Travis Scott’s fourth studio album. There was a lot of anticipation for this album from fans, as his last record “Sicko Mode” was released 5 years ago, and was a massive success. Because of all this, the album had a lot to live up to. “Utopia” showcases Travis Scott branching out musically with some tracks stepping away from his signature psychedelic sound. This is exemplified by amazing tracks such as “GOD’S COUNTRY” and the opening song, “HYAENA”. While the album is a great listen, it does lack lyrical depth that would have been great to see. That being said, Utopia is still a great listen and a top contender for Best Rap Album of the Year at the Grammys.

Austin-Post Malone

Post Malone’s album “Austin” is a departure from his past work, as he embraces a guitar-based and rock-influenced sound, and plays guitar on every track. “Austin ” is a departure from the trap-heavy production of earlier hits, and is a gift for fans of post Malone’s pop music fans, but awful for his older, rap-centric style fans. “Austin” has been less successful than his other albums, getting a lower number of album sales. “Laugh It Off” is definitely the best song on the album, while “Overdrive” is also a wonderful song giving us a look into Post Malone’s life. Overall, “Austin” is Post Malone exploring his pop music side in a fantastic emotional way, creating an amazing album despite the mixed opinions.

1989 (Taylors Version)-Taylor Swift

“1989 (Taylor’s Version)” marks Taylor Swift’s reclamation of her 2014 masterpiece, which was a pivotal shift from country to pop. Swift has re-made many of her past albums before, so many fans wanted her classic “1989” next. The album was very well received. The Rolling Stones gave it a perfect score and fans love it. Her song “It is Over Now” is a sequel to “Out of the Woods” and is masterfully crafted. Swift does a great job of keeping the atmosphere of the album the same, while still changing it at a more mature angle. I would say that “1989 (Taylor’s Version)” is better than the original, and shines a lot brighter.

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Myles Haight, Managing Editor of Photography and Digital Content

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