Karen O releases successful solo album

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COURTESY OF CULT RECORDS

By Megan G. Razzetti

The eccentric Karen O has released her intimate first solo album “Crush Songs” giving her fans a peek into her diary.

Unlike O’s day job as frontwoman for the explosive band the Yeah Yeah Yeahs where many electronic elements are packed tightly into each song, “Crush Songs” is much more simple.

Released on Julian Casablancas’ of The Strokes newly formed record label Cult Records, this solo album is truly a musical treasure.

O compiled a collection of private recordings from 2006 to 2010 where she only uses an acoustic guitar and minimal percussive instruments, giving many of the songs an unpolished sound.

The unpolished sounds work great when integrated with the lyrics that O sings. The songs are short and sweet, the lyrics are simply heartfelt.

This album includes a long track listing of 15 songs that many run under the 2 minute mark.

The best song on the album is the first single, “Rapt.”

The second track of this album gives a raw message of frustration when the crush becomes a bad habit that can be rather hard to kick when in love.

In the lyrics, O questions her crush if it is indeed worth to continue on with what may be a turbulent affair.

The conflict within the song is what any person who has had a consuming infatuation with someone can relate to.

The album progresses with more dreamy lullabies of different types of crushes. One in particular is the 11th track titled “King.”

The song alludes to the ‘King of Pop’ or Michael Jackson’s death with a fairy tale wonderment of where his spirit went.

The song is a fantastic tribute to the late singer.

Throughout the album, a consistent sound of melodic instrumental and lyrics are heard.

However, in the 14th track, “Native Korean Rock,” it starts with spoken word.

O discusses growing up in modern times and how it isn’t easy.

The song then begins, but abruptly ends close to 1:10 minute mark.

The track plays out in silence and launches into the last track called “Singalong” where multiple persons are singing along with O.

“Crush Songs” is a great album for those who are fans of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Karen O. They will understand and appreciate her concept of the album more than others might.

The non-traditional recording of each track along with the simplistic lyrics is what gives this album the most appeal.

Karen O’s “Crush Songs” is now available on iTunes or wherever records are sold.

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