Lily Allen – 'Sheezus' album review

The big-mouthed pop princess returns with her third LP this May

Three and a half years ago, Lily Allen announced she was ‘retiring’ from pop, and precisely no one believed her. Sure enough, the queen of chart-friendly snark is back with a third album whose title wittily sends up Kanye West, who, with characteristic hubris, named his last album ‘Yeezus’.

Allen’s own resurrection doesn’t capture the zeitgeist as effortlessly as her sunny, ska-tinged debut, 2006’s ‘Alright, Still’, or the melancholy electro-pop of 2009’s ‘It’s Not Me, It’s You’. And it feels messier too, as Allen struggles to reconcile her new life as a well-off mum of two coddled in the Cotswolds with her hard-partying, sharp-tongued past.

Here, producer Greg Kurstin offers a slick, melodic update of her last album’s radio-friendly electronic sound (complete with gratuitous use of Auto-Tune), over which Allen riffs on everything from celebrity culture (‘Insincerely Yours’), to the media’s preoccupation with her upbringing (‘Silver Spoon’), to the joys of married life (‘As Long as I Got You’). Crucially, her trademark wry rhymes can still raise a smile. ‘I feel fly. I’m rockin’ Kenzo,’ she sings on ‘Our Time’. ‘I’ll get high but I ain’t doin’ Benzos.’ Who else could come up with a couplet like that? ‘Sheezus’ isn’t a total triumph, 
but it’s great to have her back all the same. What do you think of ‘Sheezus’? Let us know in the comments box below or tweet us at @TimeOutMusic.

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