By Sara Nigro
Breaking her way into the music industry after getting ninth place in season two of X-Factor, Bea Miller has been releasing music since 2014. Her new album “elated!” is authentic artistry representing the struggles of young adulthood through her honest emotions and experiences.
Released on Oct. 23, this album features seven tracks, one of which, “Wisdom Teeth,” was previously released as a single.
An honest portrayal of emotion is nothing new to Miller — on her 2018 album, “aurora,” she released a captivating ballad entitled “i can’t breathe,” which related to listeners about feeling overwhelmed and anxious. She tells personal stories and expresses her emotions throughout her songs, allowing the listener to grasp a better understanding not only of what she’s feeling, but why.
There’s a theme of self-deprecation and relatability throughout the album, compiling all the emotions of a young adult struggling with feelings of hopelessness, insecurity and confusion. She writes about corrupt governments, a pending apocalypse, temporary love, insecurities, and admitting her mistakes.
In addition to her emotional retellings, she makes social justice and political statements throughout her songs. In her lead track, “hallelujah,” Miller criticizes the U.S. government’s Trump administration in the lyrics, “how am I supposed to work on myself when there are Nazis in the big White House?” Incorporating these subtle statements adds to her expression and the transparency of her art.
“hallelujah” is a strong song to start her album and its intensity and honesty caught me off guard, but immediately piqued my interest in listening to the rest of the album. “making bad decisions” is catchy and has a very specific storyline to it which gives a comforting, relatable feeling, as if you were listening to a friend talk about their life — except with music and amazing vocals.
I find humans create a deeper connection and understanding between one another when they are authentic and vulnerable in their words and actions. Miller embodies the concept of honesty perfectly — you feel as if you are meeting a new person for the first time, living a life you’ve never personally experienced.
The most surprising element of this album I came across was the final song, “self crucify,” which comes as a conclusion to the emotions she speaks of in her previous tracks. Miller repeats the pre-chorus of, “It’s important, it’s important to not self-crucify,” almost as if it’s a personal reminder for her to not be so hard on herself. I think it serves as an important message for listeners who resonated with her other songs about self-deprecation. This track brings a beautiful close to an intense, raw and vulnerable album.