Madison Beer’s long awaited debut album shows a deeply personal side to the singer that no one knew. At first glance it may seem like your typical breakup record but upon further inspection, Life Support, is multifaceted, exploring heartbreak, mental health, toxicity and self-empowerment. After seven years in the music business her debut effort is a triumph in the face of tribulation.
In 46-minutes, Madison Beer presents an array of lush pop and R&B tracks that are complimented with cinematic soundscapes. Characterized by candid lyricism the singer delivers a project with sheer transparency about a toxic relationship. However, Life Support finds the singer exploring her own private battles with mental health and the redemption that followed. With lyrics like “My skin is made of glass / But apparently it’s stained / Cause you notice all the cracks / But can’t look inside my pain,” it’s easy to see just how personal her lyrics are. Blended with decadent production, the album couples moments of vulnerability and resilience in a way that’s hard to master.
‘Good in Goodbye’ stands out on the album as a punchy R&B infused track where Beer has no regrets about breaking up with a former flame. Over an ominous harmony she sings “You put the over in lover/You put the ex in next” shining as one of the album’s brightest moments. ‘Effortlessly’ couples ethereal vocals with spacey-art pop that chronicles Beer’s trials with mental health and medication. She breathlessly adds “I’m still fading / I can’t save me” and croons “I used to do these things so effortlessly”.
Later, ‘Selfish’ serves as the album’s emotional centrepiece as an epic breakup ballad. Over lush strings she puts everything on the table singing “Boy you’re such a lost cause / Now your name is crossed off / How you gonna fix this? / You can’t even fix yourself ”.
As Madison Beer incorporates multiple styles some pieces appear to be less well-rounded. ‘Default’ is a ballad which showcases some of the album’s best production. However, it falls flat in comparison to other tracks on the album while also being way too short. ‘Baby’ is a flashy pop piece which empowers Beer as a sex-positive belter and although catchy, the over-production detracts from the single’s allure.
On a lesser album, the compilation of different themes may have led to a sense of chaos. But with Beer’s diaristic lyricism it all comes together quite nicely. Combining glorious harmonies and ominous production, Beer’s debut is when Ariana Grande meets Lana Del Rey.