Hopeless Romantic

When I was a teenager, music was my life line. I grew up in a small area with only terrestrial television channels and there was no internet. But I subscribed to heaps of lifestyle and music magazine. I listened to radio and I followed some good programs only few existed in the city of Palembang. That was 2003 and I was a middle school student. I had no one to talk to, except music. Sure enough, I took some vocal lesson and joined bands.

My music career is not doing well (or rather, it is non existent) compared to my writing career. But music has helped in so many ways. I polish my English through music, I was a poet first thanks to lyrics and music. In many ways, music stimulates my creativity. It helps me to organize a creative sequence of a script or an idea. It makes me daydream.

So I don't know if this is going to be an album review or not, but I am going to talk about Michelle Branch's new album : Hopeless Romantic.

I hope you guys have listened to one or two tracks.

Back in 2003, Michelle Branch was one of my early girl power inspirations. With her guitar, tanktop and sweet tough girl look, I was an instant fan. Though her music was often described as pop, but there was so much more edginess I found in her.

She appears as who she is, and that's what I like about her and her music. She doesn't conceal things and her voice is easy to listen to, but it has character that doesn't bore you. You can listen to her over and over again and sing a long.

To fans, music is an entertainment but to artists or labels, music is business. That is why you see your favorite artists change over time. Linkin Park's new album is heavily criticized. I stopped listening to another tough girl, Avril Lavigne, who is also in the same generation as Branch, until she released The Best Damn Thing (2007). But Branch was not afraid of being consistently honest about herself and her music. That's why she is still my idol.

Now, you cannot be a pop star without background dancers, designer clothes, auto-tunes and collaboration with the big producers who are going to make your music up-to-date. I have a dream where singer is just being honest like 2003, Vanessa Carlton with her ballet and her grand piano, Linkin Park is still rocking, Adele is still jamming to blue-eyed soul songs (this one is 2007)

So after 8 paragraph of arguments, I just want to say how thrilled I am to listen to Michelle Branch's Hopeless Romantic. It is a fresh air from the Top 40 music. My queen is back! And she is back after 14 years of hiatus. I am 25 year-old-now. Listening to her album is like having an older sister drinking in a bar with you while you are desperately looking for comfort from your love life.

Consistent to the album title, the songs in Hopeless Romantic are tragedies of a modern romance, that's how I am seeing it. While Hotel Paper and Spirit Room still have easy listening tracks and uplifting, Hopeless Romantic is a complete opposite and I don't mind it. I like the sound of 90s rock and guitar that Branch offers.

My favorite tracks are Best You Ever, Heartbreak Now, Hopeless Romantic and Temporary Feeling.

My favorite lyrics:

You're not even good enough for a love song
You're just somebody that I wasted my youth on
Turn up the radio, I wanna let you know, oh
This isn't your love song

Not a Love Song, track 10


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