Review: Tove Lo – Lady Wood

Swedish singer-songwriter Tove Lo has released her second studio album, ‘Lady Wood’.

Lo, whose real name is Ebba Tove Elsa Nilsson, is the anti-hero of the modern pop scene. Once named by Rolling Stone as “Sweden’s darkest pop export”, Lo’s raw, grunge-influenced, pop music coupled by her complex, honest, lyrical content is a concoction that has catapulted the singer into the mainstream spotlight.

Following on from her highly successful debut album ‘Queen of the Clouds’, which featured sleeper single ‘Habits (Stay High)’, Lo’s latest offering ‘Lady Wood’ does not deter from her winning formula. The album comes as a two-part concept album about chasing rushes. ‘Fairy Dust – Chapter I’ follows the story of anticipation and, as the press release states, “that tingling sensation of sex”; ‘Fire Fade – Chapter II’ is the drastic comedown that leaves you feeling “a little bit uneasy”. Then it comes as no surprise then to see Lo singing, “Perfect imperfections with mistakes and unlearned lessons. Yeah, you give me wood”, on ‘Lady Wood’ before gradually descending into turmoil on ‘Flashes’, “How to forget how f***ing broken I’ve been, but I’m healing”.

 

‘Lady Wood’ is a refreshing take on modern-pop. The breathy, electro-bopping, beats may be a deterrent to some, but Lo’s swearing and rock-like angst delivers a certain charm whilst her craftsmanship cannot go understated; after all, Lo has written for the likes of Ellie Goulding and Girls Aloud in her spare time. The album sees Lo joined by Wiz Khalifa on the tough-talking ‘Influence’ and Joe Janiak accompanies her for ‘Vibes’, which closes off “Chapter I”, but credit to the production team for intricacy of the record, which comes in the form of Lorde’s producer Joel Little and Max Martin’s protégé Ilya Salmanzadeh.

Tove Lo’s ‘Lady Wood’ closes with the pulsating, ‘WTF Love Is’, and leaves the listener feeling exactly as she has throughout the record: Tingling from the get-go before descending into sadness when you realise it’s over. 4/5.

‘Lady Wood’ is released 28th October 2016 through Island Records.

 

For fans of: Ellie Goulding, Charli XCX, Foxes.

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