Pop Unplugged Music Feature
GRAMMY season is once again upon us and with many colossal releases since the previous GRAMMY period the competition for Album Of The Year, perhaps the most prestigious award within the music industry, is tighter than it has been for a while… Which leads us on to one very important question: Will Beyoncé take home her first Album Of The Year win with Lemonade?
Before we breakdown this debate lets first take a look at the full list of nominees for Album Of The Year:
Adele – 25
Beyoncé – Lemonade
Drake – Views
Justin Bieber – Purpose
Sturgill Simpson – A Sailor’s Guide To Earth
Attention instantly goes towards two of the biggest names in music: Adele and Beyoncé. Meaning that Adele is Beyoncé’s biggest competition within this category and although Billboard’s Chris Willman considers Adele’s chances slimmer because she has already won Album Of The Year with her previous album 21 the GRAMMYs love an artist like Adele. Adele embodies what it means to make music and the emotion that transcends from her music will surely connect with the GRAMMY voters. That combined with the fact that the world was waiting for Adele to return only strengthens her chances of claiming victory within this category. Adele didn’t pop out another album she waited until there was a big enough drought that 25 would be appreciated and sure enough 25 was appreciated moving over 10 million album sales within the US alone since it’s release late 2015. Adele is an artist adored by the masses and even if she isn’t everyone’s taste she doesn’t draw controversy to herself and keeps her focus solely on the music. However that isn’t to say Lemonade, introduced during Beyoncé’s controversial Superbowl 50 appearance, wasn’t about the music either.
Lemonade is a grand project drawing from different musical influences that helped her become the most nominated artist this year due to her multi-genre appeal in pop, rock and R&B. In addition to this Lemonade doesn’t just expand Beyoncé’s sonic pallet, it also has depths of substance tapping into themes of betrayal, forgiveness, and being unapologetically black, making the album politically charged and mirroring the mood of society today. Lemonade is undeniably Beyoncé’s best work to date.
However, this last statement was also said for her previous album that lost out in Album Of The Year to Beck, bringing us on to the other nominees. Although one could argue Sturgill Simpson is this years Beck the only similarity that the two share is that they aren’t mainstream. The difference, a big difference, is that Sturgill Simpson wont win the vote. Where Pharrell beat out Beyoncé in their genre-specific category, showing a weakened support already before a vote split with next most likely contender Sam Smith that opened the way for Beck’s Album Of The Year win, this year Beyoncé’s vote split will be with fellow R&B/Hip Hop artist Drake instead of her biggest contender Adele giving 25 a clearer running for Album Of The Year.
Should Lemonade win? Probably. Unfortunately for Beyoncé unless she can ensure her votes aren’t lost to Views the 59th Annual GRAMMY Awards isn’t where she’ll claim her first Album Of The Year award, raising questions of whether she’ll ever take home the award given her level of critical claim is, quite possibly, at its peak.