Carly Rae Jepsen fans knew there would be a sequel to The Loneliest Time, released in October 2022. The artist, over the years, has established a tradition of sharing, for each of her releases since 2015, a companion album, of songs that weren’t included in the main selection, but were still worth hearing. So here we are with The Loveliest Time, a sister project to the previous one, which actually turns out to be even more interesting. In Jepsen’s case, with her rare talent in the world of pop, this was not unexpected.
Carly Rae Jepsen is, at this point, a true indie diva (Indiva?), and has escaped the clutches of the has-been category. Although absent from the majority of mainstream scenes since her gumdrop success “Call Me Maybe” in 2012, she has acquired real critical and popular respect over time for her pop affinities that blend nostalgia and modernity. Her case is quite unusual, as she seems to be appreciated by pop enthusiasts and snobs alike! She has noticeably little to prove and is clearly comfortable in her position, yet she continues to be awake, self-defying and surprising. This is evident on this new album, which has a little something for everyone, and remains just outside the reach of the predictable.
From the explosive French touch of “Psychedelic Switch”, to the quasi-IDM, celestial rhythm of “After Last Night”, to one of the most interesting chord progressions in pop on “Aeroplanes”, this album, which was intended to be discreet, announced two weeks in advance, stirs up a lot more air than expected. Everywhere, the production is gleaming and full, occupying the entire sonic space without the elements jostling each other. Aesthetic cues from previous albums slip in between the sounds, but are supplanted in style and number by what’s new. In this way, everything falls neatly into place, surprise becomes evidence; evidence becomes obsession. It’s another success for this artist with an increasingly impressive catalog.