This Friday the 13th was met by mass enthusiasm from Halloween fanatics and Troye Sivan fans alike when the renowned musical artist released his first album in five years.
“Something To Give Each Other” is Sivan’s third studio album. After years of sharing his work on YouTube, Sivan released “Blue Neighborhood” in 2015 and “Bloom” in 2018 and built his passionate fanbase along the way. His music is acclaimed as a prideful celebration of the beauty in the LGBTQIA+ experience. By sharing his personal accounts of being queer, Sivan becomes a powerful symbol that embodies sentiments from continuously underrepresented voices in the music industry.
“Blue Neighborhood” and “Bloom” are lyrical declarations of pain, regret, and broken promises from Sivan’s adolescence. While singles such as “YOUTH” and “My My My!” stand out for their joyous melodies and upbeat tempos, both albums, as a whole, are devastatingly emotional exclamations of heartbreak.
Following these two albums, Sivan continued to release music, including crowd favorites like the nostalgic and uplifting single “1999” with Charli XCX, the ethereal and timeless tune “Angel Baby,” and the elegant and reflective extended play album “In A Dream.”
Sivan has hinted at an upcoming album over the past five years. On July 13, he released the song “Rush,” a first glimpse of the album to come. While Sivan makes relationships the focal point in nearly all his songs, “Rush” was an exuberant, sparkling tribute to falling in and out of love and enjoying the impermanence of youth. His following single, “Got Me Started,” was released on Sept. 20, another track highlighting the adventures of young adulthood and finding true hope.
From the very start of the “Something To Give Each Other” campaign, I was drawn into the world that Sivan crafted: a universe of visceral and colorful emotions that define a journey ahead. I immediately pre-ordered the signed deluxe vinyl record from the artist’s webstore and counted down the days until the album’s debut.
The album’s imaginative originality and joyfulness amazed me. Sivan’s sampling of other music and his lyricism throughout inspires a feeling of nostalgia and whimsy. Additionally, the apparent happiness in each song on the album struck me.
Often, when artists switch their usual styles, they are met with mass criticism or disappointment. However, I can strongly say that “Something To Give Each Other” has already fulfilled all that I could ever wish for in Sivan’s music. His ability to shapeshift and reinvent is present in each song. All ten tracks embody the feeling of ebullience that Sivan has yet to explore until now.
One of my favorites from the album is “One Of Your Girls.” The song’s rhythmic quality and humming background create a perpetual feeling of warmth. Lyrics such as “Pop the culture, iconography / Is standin’ right in front of me” tap into the artist’s thrilling command of language. The song further presents a synth-pop style with a retro feel that complements the modern themes and lyrics presented.
Tracks such as “Still Got It” and “How To Stay With You” slow the pace of the album and highlight Sivan’s ability to tell a story in his songwriting. These tracks play on the true delicacy of the artist’s words and his ability to paint a world that is defined by human connection. “Still Got It” introduces a melancholic opening: “Cut my hair into a bowl after you told me that you liked it like that / Wish I didn’t care at all, but now I’m in the mirror with scissors in hand.” Despite the seemingly sad lyrics, Sivan creates a reflective feeling of nostalgia and joyful regret with his inability to move on. The strumming guitar in the background adds to the persistent airiness in the song. Similarly, “How To Stay With You” has an honest account that sums up the euphoria of the album. With the opening, “Cut my garden down / I’ve got no flowers, but it’s the thought that counts,” Sivan alludes to the act of trying. Troye creates a world built upon trying to do what is best always, emphasizing how important it is to strive to care for others and most importantly yourself.
Though I was immediately captivated starting with the first track of the album, what spoke to me the most were the back-to-back tracks “Silly” and “Honey.” The two songs create an inexplicable feeling of floating. When I first heard them, I felt that I was transported to another state of being, to another form of musical territory that is entirely unique to this album. The artist masterfully layers vocal tracks to create a rich sound that reverberates within the mind of listeners. Though they both are similar dance-electronica inspired tracks, I would select “Honey” as my favorite of the whole album. “Honey” is the embodiment of sunshine and that beautifully transient feeling of a worry-free world. The upbeat tempo and distinctive smoothness of Sivan’s vocal tone crafts a song that decisively impresses.
Taken together with the visually stunning and radiant music videos thatSivan has created, the artist’s new album dares to inspire ambition, daydreaming, and forever-yearning. If you have not yet taken the time to listen to “Something To Give Each Other,” I can guarantee that it has everything to give you emotionally.
Christopher Nunez is a contributing writer for The Prospect from Point Pleasant, N.J. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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