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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Album review: ‘Dopamine’ fails to deliver

Borns Album Art

Every once in awhile, the music industry stumbles upon an album that transcends genres and creates a truly unique sound unlike anything it’s heard before. Børns’ “Dopamine” is not that album. 

“Dopamine” is the most aggressively average and sub-par album I have heard in a long time. 

Børns has only been around a few years and is gaining popularity fast by performing at festivals, including Austin City Limits, and making radio hits like “Electric Love.” With his debut album, “Dopamine,” some people are saying he is the new voice of indie music. After just one listen to his album, I wholly disagree. 

Here are a few problems I have with this album and its artist in general. To begin, I don’t like the album cover. It displays Børns sitting down between a woman’s legs. To me, this is the most pretentious and uncreative thing I can think of. I also despise that his album is only a mere 40 minutes long — that’s not very generous to his fans who have been patiently waiting for his album.

The song “10,000 Emerald Pools” starts the album with a sweet beginning, but the song soon takes a downhill turn when it reaches the chorus.

Throughout the album, Børns takes songs like “Dug My Heart” with cool beats and floods them with the most overused metaphors regarding love and women. The song everyone knows, “Electric Love,” is third on the track and reinforces his lack of writing skills. Yes, the song has a good melody and yes it makes me feel like I’m a teenager in an 80s movie, but how many times can we hear some guy singing about how he thinks this chick is “sweet like candy” and also “lightning in a bottle”?

“Holy Ghost” has a catchy chorus, but it starts off too late in the song, so you have to listen to more than a minute and 30 seconds of Børns’ rambling about some girl being like a drug and having an hourglass body. This and the next song “Past Lives” remind me of the Maroon 5 songs I listened to on the radio in eighth grade.

The laziness peaks around tracks four and five. “American Money” is track four and sounds like a rip off of a Lana Del Rey song. Track five, “The Emotion,” is fine, but I would never listen to it again because it’s so forgettable.

After “Clouds,” the dazed and smooth song Børns sings slowly, you are left with three more tracks. These three tracks are rough to get through. Suddenly, after leaving you in a sleepy state with “Clouds,” the album leaps into three upbeat tracks. Honestly, I couldn’t tell you the difference between any of these last three. They are all repetitive of each other and are lame attempts to gain pop-star status.

What I find most strange about “Dopamine” is the song transition, which feels disorganized. The songs rub against each other, never establishing a flow to capture the listener. By the end of the last song, I felt the need to look at Børns’ related artists on Spotify, and to my dismay, he was accompanied by many indie rock bands. Børns’ album is less indie pop and more general pop  with its monotonous and imitative sound.

Ultimately, Børns album doesn’t make me want to listen to it ever again. Despite the hype, “Dopamine” will forever sit in the category of albums that tried and failed.

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