BØRNS returns in ‘Blue Madonna’ with decent and similar songs


Photo from SPIN, used with permission under fair use.

Garrett Borns returns in his second album “Blue Madonna” to deliver much of the same as his last.

All of this 12-track album is very synth and techno, straying from the more acoustic (but still electronic) feeling of his 2015 “Dopamine.”  BØRNS’ pulls some of his singing styles from his 2014 EP single “Seeing Stars” in “Tension (Interlude)” with a fast spit of words and then suddenly dropping to a lower note.

Most songs on this album are very slow, high pitched and electronic. After awhile they seem to almost blend together. While they don’t sound the most similar, in my opinion, all the songs are achieving the same thing and don’t vary drastically. “Second Night of Summer” offers more of his vocal range, changing from a mellow, chill theme like the other songs and becomes more angry, rock and roll. “Faded Heart” has a significantly faster tempo than other tracks, but other than that it does not have anything that really distinguishes it.  

A song that strays from this electric feeling is “Bye-Bye Darling,” with only a synth at the beginning and very slightly throughout the song. Other than that, it features a piano backing and BØRNS’ strays from his feathery, light voice and he sings like he doesn’t have to be quiet while still having that high pitched elements so it still distinguishes it as BØRNS.

Lana Del Rey is featured in the opening track “God Save Our Young Blood.” The pairing could not have been better, seeing as they both have a whispery style of singing and harmonize angelically to their repetition of “God save, God save our young blood.”

Throughout this record, themes of heartbreak are very prevalent, and he always sings about being dazzled, angered, tricked, or glad with the time he had with his girl. “Iceberg” shows his dazzled emotions, “Second Night of Summer” his frustration, and “Bye-Bye Darling” his gratefulness.

The best song was by far “Supernatural.” After hearing his feathery voice after nine songs, the tenth track with its synthy guitar and refreshing drum beat just does something different. His voice and the guitar riffs intertwine perfectly, and the balance of vocals to the backing is perfect, allowing you to appreciate all aspects of the song.

While this album had little variation and had very similar sounding music, it still has some hidden gems here and there, with catchy instrumentals and interesting lyrics. If only had put as much effort into all the twelve songs as he did with “Supernatural,” then it would be a masterpiece.

If you’re interested it is on Spotify and Apple Music to stream and on iTunes for $9.99 and Google Play for $9.49.