Zara Larsson – ‘Poster Girl’ review: Swedish pop don riffs on love in all its messy glory

Zara Larsson – ‘Poster Girl’ review: Swedish pop don riffs on love in all its messy glory

Zara Larsson

Even Zara Larsson admits that this album was a long time coming. “You can always find excuses not to have a discharge, which is exactly what I’ve been doing , for example, four decades,” she advised NME past month. Still, pop lovers needn’t panic. Though ‘Poster Girl’ arrives nearly two-and-a-half years following its lead , the faintly masochistic R&B bop ‘Ruin My Life’, it doesn’t seem tentative or distressed. When Larsson sings “this girl’s having pleasure ” on standout banger ‘Look What You’ve Done’, you could tell she means it.

Her third album starts with this season ’s ‘Love Me Land’, a stunning dance-pop tune that deserved to become a enormous hit including Larsson’s 2015 breakthrough singles ‘Never Forget You’ and ‘Lush Life’, however somehow didn’t. “Never believed I would love again,” she sings . “Here I am, lost in Love Me Land. ” This evocative line, which almost seems ripped from a misplaced disco classic, presents the album’s recurring motif: love with its reveled, messy and at times frustrating glory.

Nine tracks afterwards, on the both brilliant ‘FFF’, the Swedish star delivers a much more sparkling lyric, asking, “Is there some spark for us, or is it only purely platonic? / Is this a narrative arc? ”, before concluding: “It’Id be filmed. ” ‘FFF’ turns out to become Larsson’so shorthand to get “falling for a friend”, which as many people know, can unquestionably be messy.

Luckily, even a loved-up Larsson is too cool to provide us saccharine Valentine’s Day sentiments; the glistening, mid-tempo tune ‘Need Someone’ wrong-foots you slightly when she sings: “I’damn happy, I don’t need your love I’damn happy, however I need you. ” It’therefore the kind of subtly empowering line that really suits Larsson, a straight-talking pop superstar famous for promoting sex-positivity and calling out toxic masculinity. And she isn’t afraid to get a small risqué, telling me a preoccupied spouse on ‘I’m Right Here’: “I might have two girls in this mattress / Wouldn’t actually get your focus. ”

Elsewhere, ‘Poster Girl’ combines elegant electro-pop and somewhat grittier R&B, with a dash of EDM on the Marshmello-produced ‘Wow’ and a Young Thug attribute on ‘Talk About Love’. Only the plodding ‘Stick With You’ lacks her usual spark. Even the ABBA-affected disco banger ‘Look What You’ve Done’, perhaps a loose sequel to both Larsson’s smash 2017 Clean Bandit alliance ‘Symphony’, certainly sounds ready to conquer the graphs. Whether this happens or not, this really catchy and characterful album feels like a job well done. When this girl’s with fun, we’re too.


Release date: March 5

Record tag: Black Butter

The post Zara Larsson — ‘Poster Girl’ evaluation: Swedish pop urge riffs on love in all its messy glory appeared initially on NME | Music, Film, TV, Gaming & Pop Culture News.

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