International critics heap praise on Lorde

Lorde performing at Vector Arena. Photo / Chris Loufte
Lorde performing at Vector Arena. Photo / Chris Loufte

International critics have heaped praise on Lorde for her album Pure Heroine.

The 16-year-old Kiwi star's debut was released in the US yesterday.

Billboard concluded the album would usher in the "age of Lorde", in a track-by-track review of its 10 songs.

Reviewer Jason Lipshutz said Pure Heroine mixed the "shadowy sonics" of Massive Attack and the XX with an intuitive pop sensibility.

"September has been a profoundly great month for new female vocalists in popular music, but Lorde is easily the most vocally striking and lyrically thought-provoking. Pure Heroine is honest and addictive. Welcome to the age of Lorde."

The Boston Globe said Pure Heroine was a "complex and stirring" account of youth and its trappings.

It said Lorde, real name Ella Yelich-O'Connor, was an astute songwriter and an exacting observer of relationships and pop culture.

"This is the rare debut that's smart and disarming and instantly catchy."

USA Today gave the album three out of a possible four stars.

It praised Lorde's chemistry with Kiwi producer Joel Little and called Buzzcut Season a "near-perfect track".

"Other tunes are more static, and Lorde doesn't demonstrate much technical or emotional range as a singer. Still, the dreamy sonic landscapes she builds with Little prove inviting destinations."

Nick Krewen of the Toronto Star said Lorde was impressive for both the maturity and execution of her vision.

He said her "16-year-old going on 30" lyrics were married to an appealing pop style.

Lorde in concert at Seattle's Decibel Festival.
Lorde in concert at Seattle's Decibel Festival.

"Pure Heroine combines smart lyrics and spacious music to forge a clever and appealing new alternative-styled sound."

Lorde is currently touring the US. Her performance at Seattle's Decibel Festival was described by Rolling Stone magazine as "rousing".

The influential rag predicts Royals "may be the song of the fall".

- nzherald.co.nz

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