The time has finally come. Following difficulties within the songwriting process, Lena initially had to postpone the release of her fifth album. But, the wait is finally over. After months of teasing, the German singer has at last gifted us with the summery tropical pop of Only Love, L.
Four years on from the catchy electro-pop beats of her fourth LP Crystal Sky, this latest album was originally set to be titled Gemini. However, the Eurovision 2010 winner ended up scrapping this concept – the nightmare for any creator!
Despite these set backs, Lena has come out stronger than ever. Only Love, L, released today, has thirteen songs ready for us to dive into. And they could all be chart hits!
The first single released from the album was “Thank You”. While only peaking at number 40 on the German charts, it did become a big airplay hit and eventually reached the top five of the airplay chart. Follow-up single “Don’t Lie To Me” entered the charts at 61 and is currently on track to move up the ladder. Last Friday, “Sex in the morning” was released as the album’s final preview.
With the full LP comes even more elements of tropical pop music. However, there’s also a much deeper side to all of it.
Lena has consistently avoided talking about her private life in public. But through her music she’s able to control what is being shared. Thus, the listener gets an impression of what’s been going on recently in her life.
Indeed, the lyrics of the songs included in Only Love, L are a lot more intense and personal than any of her previous studio albums.
Lena – Only Love, L
Lena starts the album off with “dear L”, a note to remind herself: “Chill, we’re all meant to fail…’Cause you’re going to mess up big time”.
Debut single “thank you” then helps bring a more positive and uplifting vibe. The song is about embracing hate and disgrace, and then turning it into something beautiful. Singing “I am stronger now, and I am wiser now” in the chorus, Lena makes it clear what she takes away from any negative comments.
Going further down the track list, song titles like “private thoughts”, “scared” or “stuck inside” give a clear impression of what the album’s themes are about.
Nevertheless, there is also a fun side to the album. Only Love, L skirts through a number of uptempo pop tracks with tropical influences. Some of these songs seem like a big step for the German singer compared to those we’ve been treated to from her previously. It’s clear that Lena is no longer the young girl that graced the Eurovision stage. She’s grown up; no more restrictions!
One of the standouts on this album is “love”. With a lovely piano instrumentation, the song focuses on her vocal delivery. It sounds as strong as Lena could ever get. Put all the big production aside, Lena can totally strip it down.
“skinny bitch” is another highlight. With an infectious pre-chorus, the song comes with incredible production quality. Combining all the strong aspects of this record, the song could stand for the entire product. Refreshing, uplifting, but also reflective.
Lena worked with very few selected producers for Only Love, L. And that was definitely a good idea, as it creates a great flow within the album. There is a cohesive sound and great production value — her team knows how to put a record together.
Celebrating the release of her new album, Lena has several special editions of the LP coming out. There’s a very limited fan box that includes a book detailing the creative process behind the new record, posters, a golden pencil and so much more great stuff.
Another nice addition is track 14, which is added only on this special album version. 2016’s “If I Wasn’t Your Daughter” appears on the track list. This song could be considered as her very first attempt at including private matters into her music. The song received great critiques and reached #1 on the German iTunes sales charts, remaining on top for days.
What do you think about Lena’s new album? Are you happy with the direction Lena is heading in? And what are your personal favourites on this project? Sound off in the the comments section below!