Cyrus has by no means actually made a terrific front-to-back album—2013’s Bangerz, weirdly, might be most listenable the entire method by means of—and, with Limitless Summer time Trip, “no skips” stays out of attain. A run of understated early tracks, largely produced by Harry’s Home collaborators Child Harpoon and Tyler Johnson, is interrupted by the interminable Concord Korine co-write “Handstand,” the type of grooveless synth dirge that helped 2015’s Flaming Lips collaboration Miley Cyrus and Her Lifeless Petz sink like a stone. “Handstand” is constructed round a heavy-handed boat metaphor that by no means appears to go anyplace, and confoundingly introduces a personality known as Huge Twitchy, a continuing presence in Korine’s work. It feels as if, after exercising the type of restraint that’s uncommon throughout her catalog, Cyrus lastly let herself slip again into senseless extra.
Cyrus has stated Limitless Summer time Trip is loosely divided into “AM” and “PM” sections, and it’s the nighttime songs, roughly starting with “Handstand,” that grate. “Wildcard” unsuccessfully retreads the “I’m damaged” regretfulness of “You” with much less panache; “Muddy Feet,” a leaden collaboration with Sia, goals for powerful speak and principally lands at awkward. A decade on, Cyrus has nonetheless not discovered an interesting strategy to sing the phrase “I’ma,” and the tune describes a dishonest accomplice with a maddening mixture of vagueness and ultra-specificity.
Certainly, a seek for any of those songs brings up dozens of tabloid articles purporting to elucidate how they relate to Cyrus’ private life. Fortunately, a lot of the album doesn’t gas the impulse to take a position. On its greatest songs, such because the vampy and lascivious “River,” Cyrus successfully showcases who she is at this level in her profession: Mature however nonetheless messy, not above a theatrical flip of phrase (“You’re pourin’ down, baby, drown me out”) and, very often, nonetheless in tune with the big-hearted optimism that characterised her earlier music. “You could be the one, have the honor of my babies,” she sings. “Hope they have your eyes and that crooked smile.” Thrown into the center of a horned-up dance jam, it comes as a shock. A bit like Limitless Summer time Trip—which isn’t the sundazed celebration file that was promised however an exploration of the way it feels when the celebration’s over.
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