REVIEW: “Joanne” highlights Lady Gaga’s impressive range of vocals and emotions

A refreshing change from her previous albums, “Joanne,” is Lady Gaga’s best to date.

Filled with power ballads and heart wrenching lyrics, every track takes listeners on a journey through Gaga’s tumultuous past involving love, loss and everything in between.

Starting with “Diamond Heart,” Gaga reminds her listeners why she’s one of the best-selling pop artists of all time. It’s a song even those born with two left feet (myself included) can dance to and is filled with infectious beats, a signature of her music. The sick drums give the track a rock-n-roll vibe, giving me the urge to sing in to my hairbrush like a 12-year old girl.

Most importantly, “Diamond Heart” sets the tone for the rest of the album. It’s one where listeners get a look at a side of Gaga rarely seen before. Every note, every lyric, every beat is infused with heart and soul.

Every song on the album peels away a layer of Gaga’s personality many fans, whom she affectionately calls her “little monsters,” haven’t seen before.

The titular “Joanne,” a song filled with languid and soothing acoustics, highlights the enormity of her vocal range. She effortlessly moves from soprano all the way down to lower tenor chords, reminding us of her natural-born talent.

Another wonderful song is “Million Reasons,” one that speaks to me on a personal level as Gaga tells her listeners a story about letting someone go and her feelings of worthlessness after doing so. Not only are the lyrics powerful, but she also sings about these deep topics while playing the piano, which I’m a complete sucker for. All I can say is that Gaga has some of the best pipes out of any vocalist out there.

By far, however, my favorite song on the album is “Angel Down (work tape),” a short song about the controversial death of Trayvon Martin, a young black man who was shot by police. It’s a nice and slow number that showcases the beauty of Gaga’s voice, a nice reprieve from today’s bubble gum pop, bringing her to the verge of tears, connecting the listeners to the heightened emotions of the song.

Overall, I really hope Gaga keeps up her pattern on singing without all the autotune. Her voice is on a level above and beyond any other female vocalists out there and “Joanne” only proves that point further, making me excited for whatever Gaga blesses us, her “little monsters,” with next.

-Kathleen Frost

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