Not as immediately punchy as her previous album, Plastic Hearts, but Endless Summer Vacation still hits the mark, with her distinctive voice the star of the show among hook-filled tracks.
I agree with what Rolling Stone says here:
Throughout Endless Summer Vacation, Cyrus shows off the malleability of her voice, a brawny, rough-edged, bellow that can curve into a beguiling coo when the moment requires. “Jaded” is a swirling breakup cut that’s part “Wrecking Ball,” part “Déjà Vu,” with Cyrus’ rasp slicing through the haze of guitars on the regret-wracked chorus. “River” is thumping synth-pop with a soaring chorus that contrasts with the second verse, which is delivered in a deadpan monotone that makes its confessions of love feel more incredulous. “Wildcard” is galloping country-rock, Cyrus opening up her voice wide as she mulls over the conflict between her unbridled spirit and her desire for love. “Violet Chemistry,” one of the album’s sweetest pieces of ear candy, is a slick closing-time come-on that recalls Timbaland’s mid-‘00s imperial phase.
The album opens with the huge hit single Flowers, which hit the number one spot in 36 countries.
The Guardian says:
Flowers sets the tone for a considerable chunk of the album, which deals in well-written pop songs dressed up in arrangements that – with their acoustic guitars, rhythm tracks apparently recorded live, pianos and soft washes of synthesizer – nod in the direction of mid-70s LA without seeming wilfully retro. The Brandi Carlile duet Thousand Miles is probably the finest example of this, but it’s all high-quality, melodically robust and hooky, the softness of the arrangements pointing up the gritty huskiness in Cyrus’ vocals.
Endless Summer Vacation is that sense of calm that the singer has been struggling to relay for the better part of the last decade. “Drown me in your delight / Endless summer vacation / Make it last ’til we die,” she pleads in “Rose Colored Lenses”, suggesting that the real endless summer vacation for all of us is not the rave pop music purists have come to demand from Cyrus. Instead, it’s protecting our peace, staying in our lane, and buying yourself some damn flowers now and then because we deserve them.
One of my favourite tracks is the synth-drenched River, performed live here:
Take a dip into the album via Spotify below…
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