Lily Allen - 'No Shame'

7/10

Lily Allen has been one of the few artists today to have really grown up in the shadow of social media. Her origins are intertwined with the boom of the MySpace generation in the early noughties, and has been a prominent character for internet feuds and tabloid fodder ever since. But while her material to date, and largely that on her third album 'Sheezus', saw her fight back against the negativity with blind optimism, maturity has seen the frontwoman take stock of her life and looks to present the true Lily Allen on her fourth full-length 'No Shame'.

From the opener 'Come On Then', it is clear that this is going to be a brutally honest release. The track sees Lily reflect on her recent divorce from her husband of seven years, and becomes a prominent theme of what this new album looks to highlight. But rather than opt for the arrogant and self-confident demeanour that she usually demonstrates in these situations, she questions herself just as much as her ex-husband. It seems that while the divorce was hard on her, she doesn't entirely blame him and looks to show more humility in her music, making for a more engaging and captivating listen.

If it wasn't for the diverse and toned-down production on this record, the lyrical content of the album may have gone overlooked. But as it is, she clearly wants us to hear what she has to say and it shows a tremendous level of growth from the singer, both personally and musically. This is not the sometimes brash Lily Allen we usually get to hear, but someone who is working through a lot of pain yet still manages to keep level head about it all.

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