The Music Entertainment Committee (MEC) held a Lizzo album release party on Friday, April 19. The event was meant as an opportunity for enthusiasts of Lizzo to gather and listen to her latest album, “Cuz I Love You”.
Lizzo, a singer-songwriter and rapper from Houston, Texas, developed her career in Minneapolis. There, she performed with local indie groups, as well as formed a female R&B/hip hop group The Chalice. Debuting with the project Lizzobangers in 2013, Lizzo started out with a raw, booming sound that combined the production of 2000s R&B and hip hop, with a defiant confidence and exuberant attitude of a queen ready to take on the whole world. With the subsequent release of the album Big GRRRL Small World, Lizzo embraced a more modern, varied production style that’s smooth and dreamy at times, and focused and upfront at others.
Many have compared her with contemporary talents such as Cupcakke, Princess Nokia and Janelle Monaé, a vanguard of strong, women overtaking the spotlight of the entertainment world.
“Cuz I Love You” pursues a grandeur pop sound, with messages of body-positivity and self-confidence delivered by Lizzo’s soaring vocals and a style that fully encapsulates the spirit of the intersectional activist culture. The single, “Soulmate,” dismisses the unnecessary and stressful standards that modernity places on people in search for love, opting instead to be an anthem of loving oneself, of becoming one’s own type and never letting our lives be dictated by the demands of others. “Tempo” saw Lizzo and Missy Elliott display their rhyme on a wonky hip-hop beat with shifty synthesizers and thick trap bass.
The highlight of the album, however, has to be “Lingerie”, a sensual R&B tune that deserves a spot in every lover’s playlist.
With the release of such a vibrant project, it is unfortunate the album release event did not draw a significant crowd, especially considering that Lizzo’s concert at St. Olaf two years ago sold out. Perhaps more could be done to bring attention to similar events in the future and for MEC to better understand the general demands of the campus.