Get in! We're going to Chromatica!
On May 29, 2020, during the global COVID-19 Pandemic, Lady Gaga released her cyber-punk dance-pop "Chromatica." A nod to 90s house music—incorporating synth elements, interludes, orchestral motifs, and a lineup of sensational features like Elton John and Korean pop group Blackpink—"Chromatica" remains an interstellar musical experience.
As her sixth album, Gaga stepped away from her stripped down and at times unassuming reimagining on albums "Joanne," and "A Star is Born," choosing a solid focus on her incredibly singing and songwriting abilities over theatrics. As a longtime fan myself, Gaga maintained a high level of eccentric visuals and looks while showcasing her ability as a singer overall, yet many argue that she played more into her eccentrics than vocal prowess—especially after the release of "Artpop."
Regardless, Gaga blended her imagination and vocals in "Chromatica," creating a musical experience that traversed themes as mental health, failure, love, and self-empowerment without ever seeming outlandish. The album transitioned from motif to motif, musical interlude into synth dance-pop with such ease that, many a time, I find myself listening to the album from beginning to end repeatedly.
Not once does the album shuttler or lose momentum in the wake of its lyrical brilliance, musical features, or Gaga vision of a world recovering through love. Moreover, "Chromatica" served as such a necessary escape for many living through one of the roughest periods in modern human history as the COVID-19 Pandemic continues even now—affecting millions of individuals around the globe. With that, "Chromatica" was the Just Dance getaway we all needed when dealing with social isolation and political upheaval, but does its remix sister "Dawn of Chromatica" rise to the same heights?
"Dawn of Chromatica" is a mixed bag
While not the same as its predecessor, "Dawn of Chromatica" reaches close to the same intensity and feeling—highlighting the musical abilities of various musicians big and small. While artists like Charlie XCX, alongside the retained contributions of Ariana Grande and Elton John—are mainstream, "Dawn of Chromatica's" most striking feature is its inclusion of more unknown artists like Rina Sawayama, Arca, Lsdxoxo, and more. In turn, the album has a different feel to it overall that is indescribable as songs like "Sour Candy," "Free Woman," and "911" all take on new and exciting depths since they now focus more on the individualism of the respective artist and Gaga's original songs.
That's not to say that some of the songs don't fall flat. Personally, songs like "Rain on Me" and "Alice" and "1000 Doves" don't sound better or are more enticing than the originals on "Chromatica." As the remixes focus on the new artists' respective genres, skills, and inspirations, the album does at times lose that cohesiveness that existed before. Moreover, while "Chromatica" was more of a dance pop album reminiscent of "The Fame" and "Artpop" eras, "Dawn of Chromatica" doesn't have the same vision behind it. Gaga's vision is there, but the remixes from some artists obscures that in way that don't help "Dawn of Chromatica" stand by itself in a good way since "Chromatica" itself was already musically unique. Thus, adding more to songs like "Alice" or stripping away songs like "Rain on Me" muddles the overall feel of the album.
That's not to say that the album overall isn't great; it's just not always serving it ancient city style.
"Dawn of Chromatica" is up to you
As a musical body, "Dawn of Chromatica" is still highly enjoyable and a respectable remix of 2020 most iconic mainstream dance pop album. "Dawn of Chromatica" sets out to find its own hype while not necessarily living up to the hype of its predecessor, and it maintains its own unique fingerprint. While not entirely there in every regard due to a sometimes-conflicting musical sound, "Dawn of Chromatica" deserves a small spot in Gaga's artistic universe as one of its biggest qualities is highlighting the skills and prowess of non-mainstream names. This sort of inclusion on an album has the potential to take starts like this into a whole new level of music, and while thanks are due to Gaga herself, it's also an amazing reflection these artists have to their craft and their own genius. In all, you make "Dawn of Chromatica" what you want it to be.
- The Top 10 Lady Gaga Collaborations That Will Leave You ... ›
- 6 Lady Gaga Songs You Probably Don't Know ›
- 5 Reasons Lady Gaga is the Greatest Artist Of All Time ›
- Quotes By Lady Gaga To Make You Go "YASSS" ›
- Meet The Designers Behind Lady Gaga's Looks ›
- Reasons Lady Gaga Deserves An Applause ›
- 7 Reasons Why Lady Gaga Is Actually An Amazing Human Being ›