Gwen Stefani has delivered another masterpiece album! This Is What The Truth Feels Like is out today! Her first solo album since 2006’s The Sweet Escape. Teaming up with the freshest songwriting team in the game right now - Justin Tranter (of Semi Precious Weapons) and Julia Michaels, Gwen delivers some of her best and most personal work to date. While the lyrics lean more towards her budding relationship with Blake Shelton rather than her high profile divorce to Gavin Rossdale, any skeptics of her tabloid saturated personal life will respect Blake more now for bringing out such great music out of Gwen. Talk about being a coach on NBC’s “The Voice” - Gwen’s vocals are showcased better than EVER along with the most crisp production choices to make this album a pop masterpiece.
The overall vibe of the album is very modern mid-tempo top40 pop/dance while still carrying the DNA of who Gwen Stefani is and always has been. There are a few reggae influenced songs, some great ballads, and experimental dives into trap beats, r&b, and hiphop. I would say that this record sounds more similar to The Sweet Escape rather than 2004’s Love.Angel.Music.Baby. but it’s almost unfair to compare because the new album is so fresh and deserves to be treated as it’s own entity.
The record feels cohesive and every song serves a purpose - I don’t see any filler tracks here folks - even with the 5 bonus tracks (some of my personal faves on the whole album). Gwen has done some great work and we are so glad the wait is over! Here is a track by track review of Gwen’s new album...
A great opening song to the journey of this album. Great future single choice. Reminds me of some of the songs/vibes from No Doubt’s first success - 1995’s Tragic Kingdom.
YOU'RE MY FAVORITE
Modern blips and bloops in the production while the lyrics give you some insight into what Gwen’s explored and who she’s found is her favorite...(Blake!). Sexy and sultry drums, melodies, and rhythms.
WHERE WOULD I BE?
Sounds like classic Gwen combining reggae ska pop and hip hop all into a great HOPEFULLY future single. Defs one of my favorites on the album. A third verse distantly similar to both previous Gwen hits Now That You Got It, and Hollaback Girl! B-A-N-A-N-A-S
MAKE ME LIKE YOU
The current single - definitely one of the most radio friendly anthems on the album. This is a major BOP and the accompanying live one-take music video is EVERYTHING! You can’t deny this one - so hooky, so catchy, so cute, and I DARE you not to dance!
Classic Gwen slow-jam but modern - this title track gives you the most lyrical insight into her new relationship with Blake. She likes him because their relationship is all based on TRUTH. Reminds me of some of her previous slow jams such as 4 In The Morning and The Real Thing.
USED TO LOVE YOU
The first single from the album released back in 2015. Open and honest about her heartbreak and her divorce from Gavin. People relate to Gwen so much because of her honesty and vulnerability. It’s catchy in all the right ways. Heartbreaking but… "LOOK AT WHAT HE LOST"!
SEND ME A PICTURE
Great great song. Chill island vibes. Talks of a new relationship in the flirtatious stage. Relatable to everyone who's had a crush in the technological age. Addictive melodies.
Angry, sarcastic, pseudo rap-talk-singing Gwen is back! DON'T FUCK WITH HER! It’s experimental and exciting, but...in my opinion it’s the least single worthy track compared to all the other songs. But I'm proud of her direction and she obviously needed to get this one out!
ASKING 4 IT (featuring Fetty Wap)
Trappy, r&b Gwen with some help from rapper Fetty Wap. Can’t tell what the fuck he’s saying but somehow his voice sounds good and they sound good together. This one is chill and catchy and could be a future single. SEXXXY!
I love this song! Her vocals are reminiscent of 1992 No Doubt. She has such a wild Betty Boop jazzy voice. The production is also a little jazzy with a funky piano riff. She sounds like an angry but sexy Cruella De Vil on this one. Lyrically it's about all of Gavin’s naughtiness with alleged nanny Mindy Mann. “It’s a really juicy story” Gwen revealed in a recent interview...and you can get some insight on it here.
ME WITHOUT YOU
Fresh urban take on No Doubt’s “Happy Now?”. The follow-up story to Used To Love You and a solid break up anthem.
This one is so so good. Her voice moves all over the place and the melody is sooo catchy! Another single worthy favorite of mine.
and...THE BONUS TRACKS...
Production wise…from this song on (and all the bonus tracks following) the album seems to really take off of the ground and into outer space. Rocket Ship is cute, fun, and kinda rappy. Gwen tells us - “she’s not even trying” and we love it.
Probably my favorite! It’s sexy and the most EDM/dance oriented track on the album. Has some Beyoncé “Standing On The Sun” vibes but it’s so much better than that.
This one is caaaatchy - it’s very No Doubt Return Of Saturn-esque and manic but more modern. A few corny lyrics here and there, "texting on my telephone"...LOL... but when you’re dancing to it who really cares?
OOOH another favorite!!! This one is so so so sexy. I think it’s the sexiest song Gwen has ever done. It’s about that moment in a new relationship when you just dive in and hope for the best...
Great production on this one. Telling Gavin once again she’s moving on stronger and that of course - she’s LOVEABLE and we agree - We love you Gwen.