Meghan Trainor’s debut album “Title,” released in September, mixes bubbly pop songs and some slower songs, coming together as a very cohesive album with enough variety to keep the listener interested.
The first song on the album is “The Best Part,” a short a capella piece that starts the album with a bang. The harmony and jazz feel are carried through most of the rest of the album. Following is her hit “All About That Bass,” which needs no explaining, as most of us have had it stuck in our head at least once since it came out in the fall.
“Dear Future Husband,” which starts off sounding like an old vinyl record, is one of the best songs on the album. It has an old-fashioned sound and starts the spectacular use of piano and brass instruments that continues throughout the rest of the album. It also continues the sassy content of her songs that she introduces in “Bass.” The most memorable lyric in this song is, “You know I’m never wrong.”
The album takes a slower turn in the next song, “Close Your Eyes,” which has a more R&B feel. The beginning is beautiful, with a quiet guitar, great bass line and gorgeous harmonies carrying empowering lyrics. It gets a little confusing toward the middle though with excessive computer sound effects. Toward the end, though, they return to harmonies, piano and fewer sound effects, making for a very powerful switch. The next song goes back to the bubbly pop Trainor has become famous for, called “3 a.m.” The song begins with a great beat and staccato piano in the background. The chorus is very simple and sounds great, definitely something that could get stuck in your head easily. This song is a lot lighter than most of the other songs in the album, which makes it a really nice break from the very full-sounding, super computer-processed feel of the rest of the album.
“Like I’m Gonna Lose You” follows this song and is just as impressive. This song is a mix of blues, country and R&B, featuring John Legend. The harmonies are great, and it’s a good slow love song. Legend sounds amazing in his cameo, and the voices blend really well when they sing together. This song is very full but not in a processed way and might be one of the best songs on “Title.”
The next song is “Bang Dem Sticks,” which really shouldn’t be on this album. Trainor tries to sound like Iggy Azalea, which does not work for her. It does break up the album and shows she has a large range of styles, but it’s pretty repetitive and boring. “Walkashame” completely makes up for the misstep. It has great harmonies, has fantastic use of percussion and brass section and has a cool soul sound. It’s very catchy and fun, and the background singers sound amazing. The message of female empowerment is very clear and refreshing. The bridge is a nice change from the rest of the song, moving from a rap-inspired section to a cool pause for some soft piano. The repetition of the chorus does get a little annoying after a while though.
The next song is “Title,” which starts with a ukulele, which is a very weird break from the theme of the album. She also tries to rap like Iggy again and it doesn’t work at all. The only things that save this song are her sassy lyrics and the brass section. The next song is “What if I,” which sounds a bit like the song “Blue Moon.” It’s very full sounding with a huge orchestra, which is a bit much for what could be a very delicate song. Her voice doesn’t lend well to a sweet ballad either because it’s too powerful. During certain parts though, she lets her signature belt come out and it sounds gorgeous. This song could have been very successful but ends up sounding very flat without a moment of crescendo.
Trainor’s famous “Lips are Moving,” which has a great bass line, percussion and piano, is a very sassy and powerful song. The next song is “No Good For You” which starts with a single guitar, and then a bass line and percussion come in. This song is also a bit lighter sounding, which is a nice break. It has a bit of a Spanish feeling and a great bass line with very clean sounding guitar in the background. Piano comes in halfway through which makes the song really interesting. This song has the most variation in it, which is very cool.
The next song is “Mr. Almost,” which starts with an unidentifiable instrument which is uncomfortable to listen to. When the chorus comes in, the song gets much more fun. It has a great bass line and piano as usual. There are especially cool harmonies in this song especially. Stry Walker does not fit in this song whatsoever though. My verbatim notes when I first listened to this song are, “Stry Walker? What are you even doing? You don’t fit in this song, go away. Umm no.”
“My Selfish Heart” has a cool doo wop sound and is carried by a really strong piano melody. There’s also a harp playing in the background which is surprising and really cool. This song is very soulful and dreamy sounding and has a nice mix of a ballad sound and a poppy chorus, which is very interesting. The rap section is a really cool way to break up the song, and makes a cool contrast with the ballad section that follows it. Overall this is another one of the best songs in the album.
The final song is “Credit” which rounds out the jazzy feeling of this album. It has a nice piano melody, great percussion, and gorgeous harmonies that have an old-fashioned feel. This final song also has lots of her signature sass. She talks about a guy she shaped into the perfect boyfriend, but he’s dating someone else now.
Overall this album is a great pop hit with enough variation to be interesting but enough consistency to be cohesive. The best songs definitely aren’t the most popular ones, so you should give this album a listen if you can’t get “Lips are Moving” or “All About that Bass” out of your head.