The Loneliest Time
True to its title, Carly Rae Jepsen’s sixth album is an examination of solitude through catchy, chatty pop cuts like the spiky, synthy "Talking to Yourself" and the sweetly wary "So Nice," as well as quite a few tracks that feel very of Jepsen's catalog. Take its title track, a thumping yet wistful duet with singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright that, thanks to its disco strings and Jepsen's spoken-word interlude, squarely falls under the "sad banger" category. "This song is very much about that fantasy of going over to your ex's in the middle of the night and pouring rain to rekindle what was not finished," Jepsen tells Apple Music. "It's just a terrible idea in real life, but it's really fun to sing about." But the Canadian singer also spreads her wings with the poison-pen online-dating chronicle "Beach House" showing off her sardonic side and the California chronicle "Western Wind" possessing dream-pop vibes. "Go Find Yourself or Whatever," which Jepsen co-wrote with frequent collaborator Rostam Batmanglij, is the starkest sonic departure—a downcast ode to a restless lover, with a country vibe. "I definitely have been in love with the traveler before," she says. "Looking back on the song when I perform it live now, there are elements of this song that just speak to me, too, as the traveler: 'You feel safe in sorrow/You feel safe on an open road/Go find yourself or whatever.'" Jepsen recalls that Batmanglij reminding her of "Go Find Yourself" helped her blow open the idea of her sound: "Rostam sent me an email, being like, 'Remember this?' I listened, and I was like, 'Huh. Am I allowed to do songs like that?' Challenging that question and answering with an absolute 'yeah, there are no rules' is really what this album's about. That rebellion led me to fit songs like 'Beach House' and 'Go Find Yourself or Whatever' on the same album. It's an old idea that a pop artist has to be one thing. We contain multitudes. Why can't this album allow that exploration a little bit?"