About Us

Contact Us


The 21st Century

Hacktreks Travel

Hacktreks 2

First Chapters
Lifestyles 1
Lifestyles 2

The International Writers Magazine
: Music Review

Love.Angel.Music.Baby by Gwen Stefani
Clare Sager

A solo album by the lead singer of the world’s biggest rock-ska-punk-pop-new wave group shouldn’t really come as a surprise considering her track record of collaborations from the early ‘Saw Red’ with ska-punkers Sublime to the Eve hit, ‘Blow Ya Mind’. There are those, however, who may be surprised by the album’s stylistic content.

Here there is little evidence of No Doubt’s more rocky influences, but the tapping foot and keen ear will spot the band's hallmark new wave feel and spot-on bass lines. There is, of course, still reference to Stefani’s bandmates on this solo album: Tony Kanal (No Doubt’s bassist) produces three tracks and A. Young (Adrian, the band’s drummer) mysteriously appears with a writing credit on ‘Rich Girl’. Later, the fourth track, 'Cool ', is about how Stefani and Kanal are "still good friends" after "the dreaming days where the mess was made", their relationship and difficult break-up.

Stefani's lyrics are, as always, closely observed: in the tingly love song ‘The Real Thing’ Gwen tells her lover "You’re a salty water ocean wave. You knock me down, you kiss my face." Her trademark vocal acrobatics and ear for a body-throbbing beat are also present and correct, but this time they're bound up in a much more dance-styled vibe. The jittery effects on ‘Bubble Pop Electric’ combined with it’s catchy chorus and fun feel are enough for me to bet on it being a future single as well as an awesome song to dance to. In fact, I really hope there haven't been any hidden cameras in my room when I've been listening to this album - it's that jump-around-your-room-like-a-loon.

The only track I'd call an absolute dud is 'Luxurious' - the cringeworthy male speech in the introduction and its beat and synthesisers are cheesy R & B at its trying-too-hard-to-seduce worst.
The album is an amalgamation of Stefani’s loves, giving us a frenetic, fun dance record that is, most importantly, unique. It comes at an exciting time for Gwen - her clothing line has been released to critical praise, she is internationally recognised as a style icon (appearing as Jean Harlow in the movie 'Aviator'), and with No Doubt she is looking forward to yet another album.
To use her own words from the close of 'Harajuku Girls': "Style is style; fashion is fashion. Girl, you got style."

© Clare Sager - Jan 2005

Clare is a journalist with the Creative Writing Programme at Portsmouth University UK

More Reviews

© Hackwriters 1999-2005 all rights reserved