Garrett Clark Borns broke out a few years ago as BØRNS with “Electric Love” and Dopamine, embracing and even embodying the genre-bending synth-smooth R&B love that is so hot with the kids these days. Follow-up LP Blue Madonna continues in that vein, though sometimes indulges too much, sometimes too little.
Madonna opens with its clear stand out track, “God Save Our Young Blood”, synth soul real power (with background vocals from none other than Lana Del Rey). Even if the rest of the record never reaches that height, there is some great dance-press electro-pop on songs such as the following “Faded Heart” and later “Man”.
There are also some great lines, like “Throwing me that shade like I’m not cool enough” on “Second Night of Summer” and the kiss-off to the subsequent “I Don’t Want U Back”, but both are over-affected, a common problem when so synthetic. Meanwhile, other tracks such as “Iceberg” and “Blue Madonna” are somewhat underdone, simple R&B smooth.
As BØRNS, Borns has a definite stage presence, which likely can lift the weaker material on Blue Madonna (though the title doesn’t need to be a reference to the iconic singer, one can’t help but feel that it is). And it & he will satisfy those who fell in love with “Electric Love”.