Carly Rae Jepsen was born in Mission, British Columbia. She came in third on the fifth season of Canadian Idol and released her debut album TUG OF WAR in September of 2008. It includes ‘Sour Candy’, a duet with Marianas Trench frontman Josh Ramsay. Her follow-up album was 2012’s KISS. It included the uber-catchy, uber-hit ‘Call Me Maybe’. Carly won the Rising Star Award at the 2012 Billboard Music Awards. At the Junos in 2013 KISS won ‘Album of the Year’ and ‘Pop Album of the Year’, while ‘Call Me Maybe’ won ‘Single of the Year’. In 2014 Carly played Cinderella in the Broadway production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s ‘Cinderella’. E-MO-TION (2015, 604 Records), Carly’s third album, peaked at #8 in Canada and at #16 on the US Billboard 200. Here I will be reviewing the Deluxe 15 track edition of the album.
The first song is ‘Run Away With Me’. It was the album’s second single, coming out in July 2015. It is a seductive pop/dance number: “Baby, take me to the feeling/I’ll be your sinner in secret/When the lights go out/Run away with me (2X)/Baby, every single minute/I’ll be your hero and win it/When the lights go out/Run away with me (2X).../ Hold on to me/I never wanna let you go, ooh/Over the weekend we could turn the world to gold, ooh”. ‘E-mo-tion’ was penned by Carly, Nate Campany, Ben Romans, and Christopher J. Baran. It is an eighties influenced pop song that is frisky: “In your fantasy dream about me/And all that we could do with this emotion/Fantasy, dream about me/And all that we could do with this emotion.../Toss and turn without me boy/Let it hit you cold and hot/All my kisses, say you’ll miss it”. ‘I Really Like You’ was the album’s lead single, coming out in March of 2015. Tom Hanks co-stars in the cool video for the song. It is catchy pop in nature. On it, Carly is straight up about her feelings for a guy: “It’s way too soon, I know this isn’t love/But I need to tell you something/I really, really, really, really, really, really like you/And I want you/Do you want me, do you want me too?/Ohh, did I say too much?.../It’s like everything you say is a sweet revelation/All I wanna do is get into your head/Yea, we could stay alone, you and me in this temptation/Sipping on your lips, hanging on by a thread”.
‘Gimmie Love’ is a song of petition: “Eyes so bright/You’ve got a hold of me the whole damn night/I toss and turn, but still I can’t sleep right/I should’ve asked you to stay, begged you to stay/But when I get right next to you/I feel this heart beat break in two/I feel the earthquake in the room and so I pray/Fall into me and then/Gimmie love (5X)/Gimmie touch/Cause I want what I want/Do you think that I want too much?/Gimmie love (4X)...”. ‘All That’ is a romantic ballad of devotion: “I’ll be your lighthouse when you’re lost at sea/I’ll keep my light on baby, you can always come to me/I wanna be the place you call home.../When you need me I will never let you come apart/When you need me I will be a candle in the dark/When you need someone, oh let me be the one/The only one (3X)”.
‘Boy Problems’ was penned by Carly, Sia Furler, Greg Kurstin, and Tavish Crowe. It is a disco/pop tune that finds Carly getting advice from a girlfriend: “’Carly, you got to let it go!’/She said to me on the phone/’I’m so tired of hearing all your boy problems/It could be the perfect day/He’ll just make it rain anyway/So tired of hearing all your/Boy problems’”. ‘Making the Most of the Night’ includes these words of encouragement to one’s partner: “I know you’ve had a rough time/But here I come to hijack you, hijack you/I’ll love you while we’re making the most of the night.../Now baby, take my hand, now don’t you cry/I won’t let you stay here/I won’t let you hide/No more tears, don’t waste another day/Go on and fight, don’t lay down to die/Come on get up, you’ll make it through ok/Come on get up, don’t waste another day”.
‘Your Type’ was the album’s third single. It is the melodic song of one pining for another: “But I still love you, I’m sorry, I love you/I didn’t mean to say what I said/I miss you, I mean it, I tried not to feel it/But I can’t get you out of my head.../I bet she acts so perfectly/You probably eat up every word she says/And if you ever think of me/I bet I’m just a flicker in your head”. ‘Let’s Get Lost’ starts with these words of self-reflection: “I was never one to want to put my trust in someone else completely/And I was always one to want to up and run/When someone said they needed me/But you/You could be the one/Yeah, you could be the one”.
‘LA Hallucinations’ may be somewhat autobiographical: “Buzzfeed buzzards and TMZ crews/What can I say that you don’t already know?/Buzzfeed buzzards and TMZ crews/If I just lie here, then will you let me go?” ‘Warm Blood’ is a slow, brooding, techno-dance number of sexual passion: “Warm blood feels good/I can’t control it anymore/Sweet one/You should stop me there but I keep on talking/I would throw in the towel for you boy/Cause you lift me up and catch me when I’m falling for you/I saw myself tonight/Caught my reflection in the mirror/My hands and heart were tied/But I was scared of almost nothing at all/Warm blood underneath my skin/Warm blood my heart is pumping (2X)”.
‘When I Needed You’ is the last track on the standard edition of the album. It is a cool pop song vocally and finds Carly jaded: “Sometimes I wish that I could change/But not for me, for you/So we could be together, forever/But I know, I know that I won’t change for you/Cause where were you for me/When I needed someone (2X).../When I needed you? (2X).../I don’t want to work it out/I’m not going to work it out”. ‘Black Heart’ was written by Carly, Greg Wells, and E. Kidd Bogart. It has a trance-like beat and includes these thought-provoking words: “In your black heart is where you’ll find me/Cutting through the cracks of the concrete/In your black heart is where you’ll find me waiting”.
‘I Didn’t Just Come Here to Dance’ finds Carly coming on to a fella: “I didn’t just come here to dance/If you know what I mean, do you know what I mean?/If you’d just give me a chance, you’d see what I see/Do you see what I see?.../Baby I, I’m not going anywhere without you/Walk me home/Cause I like every single thing about you”. ‘Favourite Colour’ features Mattman and Robin on backing vocals, synths, and percussion. It is a soft pop song of infatuation: “When I`m close to you/We blend into my favourite colour/I’m bright baby blue falling into you/Falling for each other (2X).../Paint me up, me up, me up/In my favourite colour/Paint me up, me up, me up/You’re my favourite colour”.
E-M0-TION is, much like Taylor Swift’s album 1989, a throwback and a nod to 1980’s pop music. Lyrically, virtually all of the songs are about girl-boy relationships. Themes include: sexual and emotional passion, loyalty to one’s partner, break-ups and heartbreak, and a search for meaning and purpose in this world. Puppy love and dating are the settings for the fifteen tracks on the deluxe edition. The photos of Carly in the CD booklet are beautiful. Fans of Hilary Duff’s latest material will enjoy this record, which I’m rating 85%. For more info visit: www.carlyraemusic.com.