Madison Beer has always shown some range and promise as a singer since her early days of releasing covers on YouTube. And as she grew and released more music, the production value grew with her. She delivers a lot of great pop bangers, but most times those pop bangers come from the instrumentations/production camouflaging the slightly lackluster songwriting. Though it isn’t much of a surprise, since the expectations are not to deliver some poignant master craft quality music. And unfortunately, on her debut album Life Support, some things come together well and most times its a complete snooze fest that has direction, though it may be askew.
Madison Beer has always shown an inherent weakness in the songwriting, through an aspect of intrigue and content. She doesn’t falter in the construction of the song by giving fans some sense of competency in “infectious” hooks. Some hooks are pretty catchy and flow well, but it’s simplicity and corniness that drown into a tier below mediocrity. However, the extent of which this is her writing is one to consider because Jeremy “Kinetics” Dussolliet has a decent amount of input into the writing as her and her other co-writers.
Dussolliet has written tracks for Melanie Martinez and the hokey and bland “Airplanes,” by B.O.B. But for the most part his track record defends itself here by helping her work around some of the more unique chorus like on “Selfish.” At least Madison Beer brings some complimentary work on the production end with producer Leroy Clampitt and it shows that there was a vision to the album, and whatever vision that may be it definitely didn’t properly translate from paper.
There aren’t many highlights on Life Support, though the ones that shine in that regard are due to the small intricacies in the production. Like“Follow The White Rabbit” that has this audacious and elegant staticky-pop ambiance, similar to the instrumental for “Blue,” a bombastic electro pop ballad and the best written song on the album. I wish the same could be said of the writing, which masks itself well with repetitiveness to evoke catchiness. But the self-image positive track doesn’t really go anywhere, but it substantially keeps a momentum going.
Unfortunately that momentum starts to dwindle down after a few tracks – post interlude, as it begins to drown out and become boring to an extent. One can attest that it’s because it doesn’t have gorilla glue holding it together, but it’s her vocalizations that start to muddle and sound as bad as usual. It isn’t that she can’t sing, but she has no range and when she tries to expand it, it doesn’t sound like she did anything different, like on the horribly orchestrated “BOYSHIT.” It’s broken audaciousness within the instrumental and writing is the worst this album gets.
Madison Beer has some talent and she doesn’t show it on Life Support. The production saves her more times than it should with the plus side being that it gives some fresh instrumentations that, at times, is a little more unique than most of the pop songs today.