Hey there. How’s it going? My name is [some random guy on the internet]. And tonight I will be reviewing the new Selena Gomez record… Rare. While Selena’s name seldom crosses my library, her brand has held strong. Gomez’s previous solo album released nearly four years prior. Following a few cycles through Revival I knew I never wanted to listen to another Selena Gomez album front to back. Yet here I am. Despite preferring more dynamic acts such as Ariana Grande and Taylor Swift, I will continue to give Selena the benefit of the doubt. There is still plenty of time for her drop her opus. This current album is far from that title, however. But at least it’s not trying too hard to be something it’s not. I simply wish Rare offered more earworm potential. None of these 13 songs emit a feeling of distinction.
Furthermore, for being a pop album, where are the hits? Where is one hit? “Lose You to Love Me” might be the closest thing to it. It’s a sweet ballad of independence and emotional rebirth. By far it is the most mature offering here. Additionally, it features one of about three better than usual vocal performances. Her voice is pedestrian at best. These hooks are serviceable without a doubt. “People You Know” is the only one I could commit to memory nevertheless. Gomez’s production team essentially saves her for most of the project. Unfortunately, though, her vocal limitations restrict how adventurous these beats can be. Even 6LACK sounds exciting next to her. The bulk of these instrumentals are delicate and/or agreeable. For if they become too ambitious they risk overshadowing Selena’s performances entirely. She’s familiar and beautiful, but has yet to shift from celebrity to artist. Frankly, Rare is commonplace.