Slayyyter – Troubled Paradise

A genuine no-skip affair.

Label: Fader Label
Released: 11th June 2021

Jumping on a remix of Charli XCX and Kim Petras’ ‘Click’ in 2019, Slayyyter established herself as a key player in the next generation of retro-futuristic pop stars. Holding her own beside two of her forefathers just a month after dropping her first mixtape, Slayyyter was clearly on the up and up, but what was yet to come was next level.

An accumulation of the 2000s icons she idolised as a child (Britney, Gaga, Xtina, you know the deal), the hit-minded penmanship of her contemporaries and the 100mph hyperpop movement, ‘Troubled Paradise’ could kill a Victorian orphan on first listen. ‘Self Destruct’ is an air horn to the face right out the gate, and she barely lets up for the entire record.

Slayyyter was a superstar on arrival when her debut single ‘BFF’ dropped in 2018, but her growth is so evident here. It’s so fun and tacky in places – one of the first singles is titled ‘Throatzilla’, pays tribute to her fellatio skills and is a total hero of the album – but still gives us some of Slayyyter’s more heartfelt and vulnerable side.

‘Clouds’ is a Del-Rey-does-deep-house anxiety anthem by way of ‘Gone’ by Charli and Chris, and ‘Butterflies’ follows its lead, this time about an on-off thing and topped off with a nod to Britney in that whisper, but it’s the title track that’s Slayyyter’s A-list moment. A glittery breakup banger that never loses momentum through its 32-bar bridge, ‘Troubled Paradise’ proves Slayyyter’s pop chops and sets her apart from the rest of the hyperpop sphere.

That being said, she isn’t limited to electropop either. She makes pop-punk her own on ‘Over This!’ and ‘Cowboys’, while ‘Serial Killer’ taps into Scream and Jennifer’s Body for inspiration.

Slayyyter is the perfect pop star in that she understands the importance of image, great writing and future-forward experimentation – she’s clearly a student of celebrity and in an ideal world, ‘Troubled Paradise’ would make her a massive one too. While she was finding her feet during her mixtape era, they’re firmly planted on the ground this time. A genuine no-skip affair, it’ll be trouble in paradise for the other pop girls next.

5.0 rating
Total Score
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