By Amanda Wicks
(RADIO.COM) – Ever since Beyoncé dropped her newest album Lemonade on Saturday, April 23rd, listeners the world over have been dissecting its meaning. Beyond sharing revealing, if still largely figurative, lyrics, Beyoncé may never reveal the specifics behind her songs.
Based on the HBO special as well as the album, Lemonade seems to suggest Jay Z had at least one affair, and catching him cheating created an emotional maelstrom for Bey. Here are three major themes from her new album.
Easily Lemonade‘s most overt theme, the first half of the album concentrates on the range of emotions that result from learning about her husband’s betrayal (although when that occurred and who specifically was involved remain unknown). Beyoncé launches her album with “Pray You Catch Me,” in which she mournfully sings, “You can taste the dishonesty, it’s all over your breath.” What begins as disbelief and sorrow eventually shifts to become anger and apathy with songs like “Hold Up” and “Sorry.” On “Hold Up,” she sings, “What a wicked way to treat the girl who loves you.”
Fame & Celebrity
This theme arises throughout the album, and is closely tied to infidelity. Beyoncé suggests that Jay Z’s fame has created a situation where women constantly throw themselves at him. On “All Night,” she sings “Too many people that I know they just tryin’ to touch you/Kiss up and rub up and feel up, kiss up and rub up and feel up on you” on the song, “All Night.” But fame and celebrity have another side, one which has to do with her accomplishments. On “Don’t Hurt Yourself,” she becomes angriest about his betrayal, singing “Who the f-ck do you think are ya?/You aren’t married to no average b-tch, boy” with vocal effects that create a shrieking quality.
Once Beyoncé works through her emotions and reaches a place where she wants to fight for the relationship she’s built, forgiveness arises in the album’s final songs. On “Sandcastles,” a ballad laid bare about the promises made and promises broken, Beyoncé sings about her own promises: “I made you cry when I walked away/Although I promised that I couldn’t stay/Every promise don’t work out that way.” Lemonade‘s second to last song, “All Night” catches a glimpse of the sexual energy that has long appeared on song’s Beyoncé sings about Jay Z, such as “Crazy in Love” and “Drunk in Love.” It may take some time to get back to a place where they can’t keep their hands off one another, but it’s on the horizon.
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