Emma Blackery seeks revenge with her debut album ‘Villians’
The singer realizes her worth gracefully through self discovery and reinvention.
Emma Blackery has been slowly reinventing herself into a certified popstar, rising up to the ranks of the desired dance-pop musicians on the charts today. Her debut album ‘Villians’ is a step away from ‘Magnetised,’ the singer’s first EP released last year, which consisted mostly of bubbly pop jams, perfect for a breakout star’s beginning.
‘Villians’ is darker, taking on a mind of its own. Telling a tale of seeking revenge on people who wronged her, doomed relationships and discovering her worth, the album is an empowering glimpse into the YouTuber turned singer’s mind. Blackery revealed the LP is a concept album—captivating the listener from start to finish, with each song delving into details that helps weave a illustrious story.
She opens with ‘Villians Pt. 1,’ a hazy track that teases a Lana Del Rey sound that reminds us of her ‘Born to Die’ era—like ‘National Anthem,’ ‘Blue Jeans’ and ‘Million Dollar Man’ vibes. It’s slow, sultry and certainly different than ‘Dirt,’ the first single released from the highly anticipated piece. ‘Dirt’ is upbeat despite the contradicting lyrics. It reveals a harder side to Blackery—she’s not letting anyone walk all over her anymore. While ‘Dirt’ maintains the sound the singer established at the beginning of her career, the words deliver a message of a tougher woman behind the music.
‘Agenda’ is much the same—she recalls the comparisons made about her to conform to other successful individuals. “Am I not pretty enough for ya?/Do I not have the narrative?/You need to like my aesthetic/Am I not cute enough to remember?/I’ve adjusted my perspective/Don’t wanna be part of your clique,” she claims, standing up for her own unique image rather than becoming an untrue version of herself. She continues her headstrong songwriting with ‘Burn the Witch,’ cursing karma on her wrongdoers. She remains honest throughout these tracks, never straying from her persona of extreme genuineness.
The dance tracks are probably the most innovative. While ‘Fake Friends,’ ‘Take Me Out’ and ‘Third Eye’ make you want to hit the dance floor, they’re also easily discussing feelings of loss, heartbreak and longing. Blackery recently revealed the true meaning behind ‘Take Me Out’—it isn’t simply about a broken heart, it’s about being burned by the ones who you thought were irreplaceable.
Failed friendships, paranoia and standing your ground are the recurring themes throughout ‘Villians’—a powerful message especially in the age of numerous feminist movements. Blackery speaks the language we can all relate to, perfectly depicting the fear of trusting the wrong person when you’re at your most vulnerable.
Perhaps the stand out track from the singer’s debut is ‘What I Felt With You,’ a gentle, romantic glance at a past lover that wasn’t as great as she thought it was. She realizes her worth near the end of the song, making sense of a toxic situation and notices she doesn’t miss her ex-partner anymore. While the song is soft, it has thick skin that’s too tough to break because nothing is more powerful than a woman discovering their purpose after enduring pain.
She closes out with ‘Villians Pt. 2’—it’s hopeful unlike the first track. You feel Blackery’s fear and uncertainty for the future but also her undeniable strength. Unchanging throughout, she unveils her weakness of trusting too much and trepidation towards opening herself up. They’re anxieties we all harbor—unsure of people’s intentions makes us afraid to get ultimately burned in the worst way possible. Being vulnerable is terrifying especially for the love-longing people striving for a loyal connection—Blackery has given those individuals an 11-track anthem to scream their lungs out to.
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