Banks ‘Goddess’ Review: Watch Out

Banks must be the new Lana Del Rey. Her debut album, “Goddess,” is proving to be a real contender in the “cool music you haven’t heard, but should” scene. Sounding like a hipster’s diary feeding mixed emotions, tantric beats and distraught F-you/I’m hurt/strong woman lyrics, “Goddess” is an album to listen to, with Banks being the latest new artist to look out for.

The title track, “Goddess,” follows a mellow mid-tempo, a little slow, very hazy and sensual. Either speaking in third person or defending a friend, Banks describes the resurrection and empowerment of a woman following a bad relationship and the loneliness the man must feel. The lyrics are strong and reiterate the sense of womanhood in a mellow fashion and almost sexy way. A very powerful track wound around the subtlety of the beat.

The number five track, “This Is What It Feels Like,” a song about the way the tables can turn on a lover, is just as dark, just as real. Again the tempo is slow but perfect in its alternative/R&B polymer with the use of a deep bass and haunting fade-outs. The track declares “what it feels like” to be on the unforgiving end of being hard to get; once you show your feelings, they’re shunned (ouch). Banks delivers a studio gem to be felt a little more than heard. In its odd way, despite the lyrics and hypnotically depressive tempo, it’s a lively track.

The number nine, “Drowning,” is probably the best track. About refuting a disrespectful lover while still in love with them, Banks channels Lana Del Rey with those chanteuse vocals that again blend with the alterna-R&B tempo. The lyrics are raw and bitter as ever and does a good job of capturing the theme of hurt and scorn. The hook alone, “take it from the girl you claimed to love. ..you were not deserving” shows personal hurt, that which will create a bond between Banks and her listeners.

The other tracks follow the same thematics, eclectic and dark beats, describing happiness, sadness or sex, highs and lows. The album itself, the dark side of girl power, as well as the reality of love and its ups and downs, is enigmatic in sound without much damage to lyrical integrity.

The different timbres and tempos can either have you transcend towards a melodic yet warped high while the lyrics can humble you. The result is a feeling of unsatisfied greatness that makes you want more of either.

Sounds like Lana Del Rey and The Weekend got together with Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins and put together a door to the soul of today’s heartbroken (mainly female) rebels. With production from several producers and writers, the album is a good listen.

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