March 30, 2023
Ithaca, NY | 27°F


Review: Carly Rae Jepsen gets fans moving with ‘Kiss’

An answer to the age-old question, “Can lightning ever strike the same place twice?” comes in the form of Canadian pop star Carly Rae Jepsen’s debut album, “Kiss.” The answer is simple: Lightning can strike 12 times, because this album prevents Jepsen from being just another one-hit-wonder with its catchy melodies and upbeat pop tunes.

Songs like the effervescent dance remix of “Curiosity,” and the bouncing synths of “Hurt So Good” recap off of the ’80s new-wave influences that made “Call Me Maybe” such a relentless earworm. However, Jepsen’s trembling vocals breathe a haunting aura into songs like the somber “More Than A Memory.” Though her album is chained to the airy dance-pop style of her producers, she still contributes to the success of each song — even in places where the production becomes redundant.

With her distinctive lilting tonal quality, Jepsen turns a phrase with a sense of maturity that far outweighs anything her contemporaries churn out. This cooing aspect of her voice is what gives her seemingly trite dance-pop persona an endearing sense of earnestness and commitment to each and every song.

The result is the musical equivalent of cotton candy, with each song lasting three minutes on the ears and an eternity on the brain. The pure sugary fun of “Kiss” suggests that fans haven’t seen the last of Jepsen or her lightning in a bottle.

The pop star released her debut album, ‘Kiss.’