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Music Review: 4 years later, Lorde still a royal singer

Associated Press logo Associated Press 6/16/2017 By MESFIN FEKADU, AP Music Writer
File-This June 2, 2017, file photo shows Lorde performs on day one of the Governors Ball Music Festival in New York. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, File) © The Associated Press File-This June 2, 2017, file photo shows Lorde performs on day one of the Governors Ball Music Festival in New York. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Lorde, "Melodrama" (Republic)

Grammy-winning New Zealander Lorde created "Royals" and the rest of her debut album in her teen years. Now, at 20, she's back with a sophomore release just as exceptional, and with a growing sound.

"Melodrama" finds Lorde partnering with Jack Antonoff, the fun. guitarist and songwriter-producer who worked on Taylor Swift's "1989." He helps Lorde expand her sound on the new album, keeping what was best about 2013's moody "Pure Heroine," with a few extra layers.

Tracks like "Liability" and "Writer In the Dark" are beautiful tunes, highlighted by the piano, that showcase Lorde's overall growth — sonically, vocally and lyrically. "Sober" and "Supercut" are beat-laden winners; "Hard Feelings/Loveless" is revealing; and "Sober II (Melodrama)" is eerie and epic.

This 11-track set is as grand as Lorde's name.

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