A new beginning is a fitting theme for the release of Lorde’s new single “Green Light”. In a stunning return, Lorde has made me rethink my previous opinions of her as an artist. Before now, I had never minded when her songs played on the radio, but I also never actively sought them out. Probably the only song from her I really enjoyed was “Yellow Flicker Beat”, but otherwise I never considered her to have an interesting range. It seems though that I just can’t resist a good break-up song, so I gave it a chance and was glad to be surprised.
“Green Light” is different from her previous works, more expressively pop, but it works to show off Lorde’s developing range. The single begins with a simple piano accompaniment, before an electric beat joins in during the hook, and taking over completely when the chorus strikes. This is the giddy feeling you get when you throw away all thoughts and inhibitions and just let the music on a dance floor consume you.
The lyrics express the bitter thoughts and emotions felt after finding out a partner is cheating, and hope that karma will eventually hit them. Lorde doesn’t wallow in sorrow though, instead showing a feisty strength and throwing barbs at his “great whites” – the lies that will come back to get him. She wants to ditch the past, but is still unable to shake away the memories completely. Desire and anticipation to leave are held back by unsurety about the timing and whether she should go, and this is heard most when she sings “’Cause honey I’ll come get my things, but I can’t let go/I’m waiting for it, that green light, I want it/Oh, I wish I could get my things and just let go”.
Ultimately the song is about embracing a new beginning, which is perhaps the reason the music is so celebratory despite the situation presented in the lyrics. I thought the message, conveyed through Lorde’s distinctive vocals alongside the perfectly paced music, succeeded as not only a powerful comeback, but a great song to add to my playlist.
Photo Credit: NME