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She Really is Back from the Death! A Melanie Martinez's "Portals" Review

Updated: Apr 5, 2023

Album: Portals

Artist: Melanie Martinez

Sub-Genres: (Rate your Music says #COMEDY, so let's keep that), Contemporary R&B

Label: Atlantic Records

Favorite Tracks:


I am so sorry for the type of person I'm about to become in the next couple of weeks. But when I heard the rumors that Melanie Martinez was releasing a new album, I was very excited. She has always been known to use concepts such as kindergarten and growing up, and adding twists to those concepts.

Assuming her first album, Crybaby, was about stuff relating to the very early stages of life of a human being, and her second album K-12, follows topics related to school, I really thought she would continue on the life cycle, and that she would write about life as an adult, or at least give that concept a "Melanie Martinez Twist". But she skipped all of that, and went directly to the concept of dealing with oneself's mortality, and how to live life to the fullest, completely changing her brand from cute infant pastels, to etheral alien-like cottagecore and fantasy visuals.

Onto the album itself, Melanie has always been one to critique aspects of society through her lyrics, and this trend is not an exception Portals. The topic ranges from self-hatred and wanting to change/save herself (which would explain why she changed her appearance drastically), to even getting out of a toxic relationship and finding a safe person to rely on after abuse. The music is edgier than what we are used to from her, but her unique essence remains in the way she chooses to word certain actions. You can still listen to this, and get the Melanie Martinez vibe.

Almost each song has a lead in for the next one, which can sometimes seem weird to listen to if you are not listening to them in order. And those songs that don't sound edgier, and that fall more to the softer side, still fit the theme of etheral-ness, and sometimes even follow some trends of previous albums (without the blatant references to kindergarten things and school things). Having lead ins to the next song at the end of your song can be really cool if you plan to listen to an album in order, but songs can end up feeling a little awkward at the end of them without the song they are suppose to follow. And while this doesn't affect the overall experience of listening certain songs, it can leave you feeling a little weird. This would be my only negative critique.

This last bit could be due to the fact she likes making her music videos be connected into one big story (lets not forget she released K-12 as a film on YouTube, which is still free to watch today), and if that's the case, I can't wait to see what other music video ideas she has for Portals. She released the one of Death last week, and features a shot of her stabbing like tweleve different swords to her previous appearance, so, fun!

Overall, I loved listening to Portals as soon as it came out into YouTube (even if my first listen was not in order). I definetly will be listening to this in Spotify in order as soon as it releases today in about an hour, and I can already tell my lastfm for April will be mostly Melanie Martinez in general. Thank you so much for reading this, and please consider giving Portals a listen!



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