Truth be told, I didn’t like P!nk at first. “There You Go”, the song and video both seemed like derivative overdone 90s R&B. I’m so glad that a certain miss Alecia Moore proved us all wrong. I was a moderate fan from Misundaztood on, but I’m Not Dead and Funhouse cemented her as someone who can really bring it. What sealed the deal for me being a lifelong fan was watching her last dvd/blu-ray The Funhouse Tour Live in Australia. She puts so much work into her stage show, does crazy acrobatics and whatnot, and sings everything live with an excellent backing band and backup vocalists. No backing tracks. She works hard to make sure her talent comes first and the spectacle is secondary. Most pop stars out there right now can’t hold a candle to this. So after her Greatest Hits…So Far!!! having even more excellent hits in “Raise Your Glass” and “Fucking Perfect”, my expectations were high for this album.
P!nk is now in a place in life where she has plenty of experiences and life lessons to draw from and write about, but is still a bratty teenager at heart. Truth opens up with something different. “Are We All We Are” sounds nothing like anything she has ever recorded. It’s a fists in the air rally cry of a song about not going down without a fight in these messy times. Then we immediately go from the serious side over to the playfulness of “Blow Me (One Last Kiss)”. The song was an obvious hit right from my first listen, but I am glad that P!nk isn’t watering down her lyrics just to have a radio hit. She proved that on “Fucking Perfect”. Record now and worry about the radio and the Wal-Mart editions later. Lady Gaga please take note. This is followed by the one song not written by P!nk, the recent hit “Try”. Despite this you wouldn’t realize someone else wrote it, as she makes it her song. ‘Cuz she can. The next song is my personal favorite, a sad but beautiful duet with Nate Ruess of Fun. called “Just Give Me a Reason”, about the insecurities of a relationship from day to day. It’s more a musical dialogue than a duet. Insecurity is a big theme in P!nk’s songs, as follows in the almost silly “How Come You’re Not Here” where she talks smack about her ex’s new younger girlfriend. “I’ll be right here, til you get bored, and she gets carded for beer”. In between those two tracks is another great guest appearance. “True Love” marks the first new recording of Lily Allen, now known my her married name Lily Rose Cooper. The song is upbeat, sincere and probably destined to be a hit.
“Slut Like You” follows, and I hope so much that it becomes a single, just because I want to see a video for it. This is her twisted girl power track about going out and taking advantage of the guys for a change. The upbeat tracks continue with another surefire hit, the title track. “The truth about love is it’s nasty and salty. It’s the regret in the morning, it’s the smelling of armpits”. Now that’s a love song that’s down to earth. Things taper down with a sparkling ballad called “Beam Me Up”, that as one friend put it, is the “Glitter In the Air” of TTAL.
Back to the party, or the morning after rather, and “Walk of Shame”. Self explanatory and being shameful never felt so fun. “I’m wearing last night’s dress and I look like a hot-ass mess. Although my hair looks good ’cause I haven’t slept yet”. Then we have “Here Comes The Weekend”, because it was about time we had a new weekend party jam. Eminem lends a verse here, and it works quite well. “Where Did The Beat Go?” has a harder breakbeat underneath a song about pondering the future of a relationship. Then the final track on the regular edition, “The Great Escape” is a slow, sad and hurtful song about not letting someone you love give up on life. So far, one stellar album, and one of P!nk’s most satisfying yet. But wait! There’s more.
The Target Deluxe Edition has four more tracks. “My Signature Move” has a feel like it’s the prequel “Walk of Shame”. “Is This Thing On?” has similar themes to other songs on the album, but is a bit more serious and has quite an interesting drum track. “Run” is a heartfelt song written obviously for P!nk’s newborn daughter, and it’s quite unbelievable that this isn’t a featured track on the main album. Here P!nk is expressing how she wants to be the mother she never felt she had growing up, even if her daughter turns out to be like P!nk was as a teen. Definite highlight. The last track is also not to be missed. The fun, clap along reminiscence of “Good Old Days” finds P!nk pondering the past, the present and newfound motherhood. Could easily be a hit, but was regulated to bonus material.
The iTunes version gives you even more tracks. “Chaos & Piss” is about as close as P!nk comes to a torch song, with some beautiful piano and great vocals. “Timebomb” sounds like a hit, but a generic hit by her standards because while it is catchy and sounds great, it brings nothing new. I’m thinking P!nk recorded this, and then wrote even better songs. Still, if everyone’s B-material was this good.. wow. The Japanese version has one more track, “The King is Dead But The Queen Is Alive”. This is one of my favorite tracks of the whole set, where P!nk celebrates her dark sarcastic sense of humor. “Rah rah rah! Sis-boom-fucking-bah! There’s a party in your honor, but you won’t be there whatever!”. This brings the count to twenty tracks. If you choose to seek out all these tracks they make a great 80 minute album. A double album by yesterday’s standards, but definitely low on the filler, and big on the bang.
Why can’t everyone make pop albums this fun? P!nk still treats an album like an album and not an overpriced collection to house 3 hits and filler. Thank you P!nk!
Videos from the album to check out:
“Blow Me (One Last Kiss)” –
“Just Give Me A Reason” feat. Nate Ruess of Fun. (Live on VH1 Storytellers) –