Beyoncé’s New Album ‘Renaissance’ Is A Glittering Homage To Ballroom Culture
Queen Bey is back with her seventh solo studio album and first act of a three-part project Renaissance — bringing everything from 90s house, underground ballroom, to classic disco, club bangers and electric slide.
Renaissance is already hitting number 1 on iTunes chart Australia, and marks the return of an evolved Beyoncé, who at the remarkable age of 40 is rejuvenated from the pandemic that she claims allowed her “to be the most creative”.
Music journalist Sosefina Fuamoli believes Beyoncé’s new record is just what many of her fans needed.
“I feel like a lot of people have given up on trying to predict what her next move is gonna be.”
“The only predictable thing about Beyoncé is that we all know she’s gonna march to the beat of her own drum. So having a full blown kind of disco club record from her is amazing.”
“But at the same time, it really shows how smart she’s been when it comes to the sort of vision she’s had for this record, what it means for her, and where she’s at in her life.”
BEYONCÉ IS COMING FOR BLOOD pic.twitter.com/YZdrm4cBKb
— ً (@rumiyonce) July 28, 2022
Breakdown Of The Album
Beyoncé has dedicated Renaissance act 1 to her family and to “all of the pioneers who originate culture and the fallen angels whose contributions have gone unrecognised.”
The record’s first single “Break My Soul” has been dubbed a “boisterous and euphoric slice of 90s diva house” and was Bey’s first US Top 10 single in six years.
“‘Break My Soul’ gave us a really unique insight into just how important black musicians were for that house music back in the eighties and nineties and still how integral they are too more contemporary versions of it today.”
“Like the ballroom scene hasn’t died off, the ballroom scene is still very much culturally relevant as it was back then,” Sosefina told Junkee.
The 16 tracks and the stunning album art is everything we expected from this glittering new dance album and more. There’s samples from disco legends Giorgio Moroder, Donna Summer to Robin S.
It features production from electronic producers Skrillex, Honey Dijon, Green Velvet, Kelman Duran, A.G Cook, Luke Solomon to funk legend Nile Rodgers and The Neptunes.
This music existed in spaces where artists could properly express their freedoms Sosefina explained.
“You know the brands of hedonism and expression that were still condemned, and still are condemned in a way today, but definitely back then they were relegated to the underground.”
“Oftentimes when things are relegated to the underground, that’s where we see some of the most talented people and music makers and artists really thrive”.
Sosefina hopes that by Beyoncé putting these scenes under such a mainstream spotlight, that music fans and her own fans who “come to this music without having the history behind it, will educate themselves and discover really important culture shifting artists and producers.”
“I feel like that’s possibly one of the biggest takeaways that anyone can take from this record.”
Danyel Smith, veteran music journalist and author, says that part of Beyoncé’s cultural mastery is “her ability to make herself scarce at some moments and then to once again become the centre of everything she does.”
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She’s the most nominated female artist in Grammys’ history and only this week Rolling Stone penned the singer as the world’s greatest living entertainer for the past decade.
It’s safe to say the Beyhive is happy the Renaissance era is finally here.
Stay tuned for the next two acts.