If you know Becky well, you’ll know she’s been a die hard Miley fan since the start. From Hannah Montana, to Wrecking Ball me and my girl have been through it all together, so understandably when her new album ‘Younger Now’ dropped this week, I was pretty excited.
Miley’s music has changed throughout the year. Starting with the fun loving ‘Best of Both Worlds’ pop princess, who showed me exactly how to live my life as an undercover teen superstar and last leaving us with ‘Malibu’, a dreamy ballad of nostalgia and love.
Having been a huge fan of all of Miley’s work over the years (let’s just pretend that Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Pets was never a thing) I was ready for what my girl was going to give me next. With headphones in my ears and high expectations in my heart, I started to listen to the album.
1. YOUNGER NOW
Okay- so I cheated a bit here. As the second single off the album, I’d already heard and fallen in love with YN a few weeks back. My love only grew after Miley’s performance of the song at the MTV Video Music Awards, showing her growth as not only an artist, but as a young women, after her previous ‘marmite’ performance at the VMA’s with Robin Thicke in 2013.
Back to the music- Younger Now put me in a trance like state. Miley tells us in her interview with Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show that the waves you hear in the beginning of the song are from a lake in her own backyard. For me, YN was more than a song but more a stream of advice from Miley herself. Showing us that “change is a thing we can count on” and that “no one stays the same” the number of moments of realisation and ‘oh sh*t she’s right’ throughout the song was ridiculous.
When I first heard Malibu, I actually wasn’t a fan (trust me the inner turmoil of not immediately falling in love with the song was killing me) But having being a huge fan of Miley’s loud and out there pop phase in ‘Bangerz‘ I was wishing for something to add to the pre-drinks playlist, and Malibu certainly wasn’t that.
However, as time went on, the obsession started to form. It ended with a 16 song playlist on my Spotify of every single Malibu remix, to fall asleep to after a heavy night out. Malibu is perfect for those dreamy ‘staring out your car window pretending you’re in a music video’ moments.
3. RAINBOW LAND
DOLLY PARTON’S BACK B*TCHES. Hearing the news that Miley’s ONLY collaboration on this album was going to be with Dolly, I was ready for it. Miley’s country roots are what made me fall in love with her music, and her godmother Dolly could only bring out the best in them.
Starting and ending with a recorded voicemail Dolly left Miley, at what assuringly was a young age when referencing her ‘cassette’ and ‘flip phone’ (as I’m sure even Dolly is on board with the iPhone by now) the incredible relationship between the two is obvious. Rainbowland is fun, upbeat and uplifting. Listening to the recording makes me incredibly excited to see these two perform this one live, as I really think it would be something special.
4. WEEK WITHOUT YOU
Something about this can’t help but to remind me of Billy Ray’s music here. There’s a laid back, country girl vibe to this melodic little song. The simplicity of the lyrics and narrative is easily relatable, making this one an easy listen.
And I’m sure just as I did, all the old Miley fans caught the ‘Old Blue Jeans’ reference in the second verse.
5. MISS YOU SO MUCH
If this songs not about Liam and the couples past, then I’m confused. We all know their love story- fallen in love on set of Nicholas Sparks’ novel-turned-movie ‘The Last Song’, breaking up when Miley went through her… ‘rough’ patch, and hopelessly fell back in love when she made the much awaited for 360. Spending time both apart and together brought this couple back together, proving that true love waits… right?
6. I WOULD DIE FOR YOU
Okay, so I’ll admit when I first heard this I thought this could’ve been one of Miles’ classic songs written about her dead pets (again, please never mention the album). The line ‘There have been times when I’m up all night, crying all night so I sleep with the light on’ sent shudders down my spine thinking this was going to be about the latest animal loss (call my heartless but it’s just not what I want to hear music about, #SNS)
However as the song progresses, it’s easy going vibe and simple melody take over whatever the meaning of the lyrics could be. So even though I have no f*cking clue who Miley is planning to die for (and I’ll be here praying its not her pig), the song is okay.
My spirits begin to be lifted as Thinking’ starts. As someone who really doesn’t have a taste for ballads, this up-beat, sassy and feminine tune gives the album a much needed energy boost. Although perhaps not the lyrical genius throughout the chorus, this song already beats the others as something I can actually choose to put on on my walk to the gym, and not have to force myself to listen to just because I support Miley and everything she will ever do and create… (reference back to song number 5, just not my cup of green tea)
8. BAD MOOD
*STORY TIME* One time, my sister and I were driving the Great Ocean Road in Australia (as you do on a day to day to basis) listening to classic Miley classics from our childhood. It suddenly occurred to us that every single Miley song, was narrative to a point of ridiculousness. Take for example, ‘You’ll Always Find Your Way Back Home’.
The lyrics read: ‘I wake up, it’s raining and it’s Monday, looks like one of those rough days’
Well, I hate to break it to you, but 10 years down the line and we’ve still got the same old Miles. Bad Mood almost mirrors this exact line, ‘I alway’s wake up in a bad mood, I’m sick of rushing straight to the sink’.
Okay Miley, I get it, I love you, but I don’t remember asking for your morning routine.
9. LOVE SOMEONE
Sassy Miley is back. Take ‘Can’t be Tamed’, remove a hell of a lot of bird feathers and add an easy-going, jazzy vibe. It’s a much more matured, passionate, sexy song about loving someone and the dangers you face to your independence when you do.
Sassy Becky approves.
10. SHE’S NOT HIM
A SEXUALITY BREAK THROUGH. Oh we were all waiting for it, weren’t we? Any hint to Miley’s bisexuality and this song is just what we were looking for. That aside, this song is kinda heartbreaking… You can almost hear the sadness and confusion in Miley’s voice as she sings.
‘No matter what you say or what you do, I just can’t fall in love with you because you’re not him’
Listening to this song a second time through and it hits me. The pain of loving someone but knowing they will never compare to that one person who you hold above everyone else… brb deleting my ex-boyfriends number before I make some bad decisions.
Okay, again I’ve accidentally cheated here. This Becky was lucky enough to see Miley perform this at One Love Manchester. Although, I was in shock and filled with tears at the sheer presence of being in a 100 meter radius of my queen so I can’t say I really heard what was going on.
Think of ‘Inspired’ as ‘Wake Up America’ but 10 years on. It’s basically the same song minus the auto tune.
So overall… was I impressed?
Honestly… no. As much as it breaks my heart to say, the new album was not my vibe. That’s not to say I hate every song on there, nor is it to suggest any less admiration for anything Miley has created, it’s just not my vibe.
As Miley’s matured, so has her music and unfornatuely, this is just in the opposite direction to my personal preference.
So as much as I won’t be blasting Younger Now through the streets of my home town, Miley makes a serious impression with this new album and her new found maturity and respect for Mother Nature is echoed throughout out.
But for now, I’ll still be listening to BANGERZ.