Reviews

Selena Gomez Debuts Her Strongest Record Yet With Rare

Selena Gomez debuted her best record yet this past Friday, January 10. The “Lose You to Love Me” singer dropped her third solo album, Rare, and this record is everything we could have hoped for from Selena.

While we’ve always enjoyed SG’s music, this record is different. In fact, we find it to be an incredibly refreshing piece of work that reflects not only on the singer’s past heartache, but it also boasts her confidence and strength.

It’s a pop album, yes, but the thing that really makes it great is that even though it’ll get you dancing, it’ll also get you feeling. Rare is an emotional record, demonstrating how one woman has found immense worth in her self and is telling the rest of the world that 1) she is unique and 2) others should find that worth in themselves if they haven’t already.

Gomez kicks off the album with its title track, “Rare,” and she reminds of just that — she is a rare being and she shouldn’t be taken for granted. Paired with an out-of-this-world music video, Gomez is smooth and sultry as she lets her lover know, “I’ll bet there’s somebody else out there // To tell me I’m rare, to make me feel rare.” If it makes any difference, we completely agree with her. Gomez is certainly one-of-a-kind.

She then dives into her two hit singles, “Look At Her Now” and “Lose You To Love Me,” which were the perfect way to showcase the triumphant beginning of the singer’s Rare era, illustrating Gomez’s inner strength and impeccable sense of self-worth.

Moving on, Gomez gets a little sassy with her next track, “Ring,” singing, “Got him right where the carats at // Wrapped ’round my finger like a ring, ring, ring,” and, “Yeah, I received your message, all twenty-three // You know I’m Jordan with it, G-O-A-T.” Of course, we absolutely LOVE this energy.

Meanwhile, “Vulnerable” is definitely one of the album’s standout tracks. Gomez is soft and sweet on this one, making her listeners feel all the feels as she paints us a picture of what love should look like. The song is dreamy and, just as its title states, vulnerable.

Up next is “People You Know,” which places its focus on losing someone in your life — watching them go from someone you know to someone you don’t. The “Bad Liar” crooner sings, “When it was good, we were on fire // Now I’m breathin’ ashes and dust // I always wanna get higher // I never know when enough is enough.” This song is one that we feel can easily be applied to both the loss of a lover as well as the end to a friendship, both of which are incredibly difficult to get through.

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Gomez quickly picks it back with the dance-worthy “Let Me Get Me,” in which she lets us know, “I’m good right now, // I will let me get me.” She talks of feeling free and finally seeing herself while also making it known that her happiness shouldn’t be shot down.

The first feature of the record hits at track No. 9, “Crowded Room,” in which 6Lack lends a hand to Gomez’s sweet falsetto. She sings, “Baby, it’s just me and you, // Just us two // Even in a crowded room.” 6Lack comes in at the third verse as he raps, “You make the whole room feel slow-motion // You make me feel like I’m drowning in a potion // Closed off, tryna get a little open // The more that I give, the more that I get.” We love the intimacy this track brings — it’s love in its simplest of forms, reminding us of that single person that always makes a crowded room feel a little bit more special.

“Kinda Crazy” is Gomez’s take on a relationship gone sour as her significant other begins acting a bit off. The track itself incorporates a bit of funk as Gomez tells her lover, “I think you’re kinda crazy, // And not the good kind, baby, // ‘Cause you’re actin’ super shady // You know it, you know it.” Production-wise, one of the most interesting parts of this track is the transition from the end of the first verse and into the beginning of the chorus. Gomez kicks off with a steady beat, but once she sings the word “ghost,” the track enters this dreamy state before she jumps to the chorus and back to that initial beat.

Gomez shows her playful side in “Fun,” declaring, “My kind of trouble likes your trouble.” Just as she says, she just looking for a little fun — a fling, if you will — and we are totally here for it.

As the only explicit track on Rare, “Cut You Off” is just as it sounds. Gomez is looking to rid herself of some dead weight that broke her heart. She sings, “And I might as well just tell you while I’m drunk, // The truth is that I think I’ve had enough // Emotionally messin’ with my health // How could I confuse that shit for love?” The tune is slightly reminiscent of a Julia Michaels track, but such an influence wouldn’t be surprising since the two are such close friends. Michaels even helped co-write a few of the album’s tracks.

Last, but certainly not least, Gomez recruited the help of Kid Cudi on the perfect track to close out Rare. Titled “A Sweeter Place,” Cudi’s influence is present right from the get-go. The track tells a tale of optimism and hope as both artists seek a place to “sugarcoat the taste;” it makes us feel that, despite all of the chaos happening in the world, some good may still be left.

Overall, Gomez soars with this body of work. Despite her long break from music, she has come back better than ever with a confidence we hadn’t yet seen from her musically, and we’re thrilled with the outcome. We can’t wait to see where Gomez takes her music next.

Until then, we will happily continue to bop to Rare.

Featured Image: Interscope Records

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