Arts & Entertainment‘Dancing With The Devil…The Art of Starting Over’ unapologetic,...

‘Dancing With The Devil…The Art of Starting Over’ unapologetic, yet slightly boring

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Demi Lovato is doing more than just a redemption tour. This time around, she’s telling the harsh truth with her latest release, ‘Dancing With The Devil…The Art of Starting Over’. 

‘Dancing With The Devil…The Art of Starting Over’, Lovato’s seventh studio album, dropped April 2. She discusses a lot of the struggles she faced on her new journey with sobriety. ‘Dancing With The Devil…The Art of Starting Over’ is a very solid project highlighting both her highs and lows and has very few blunders within it. 

The premise of this album deals with much heavier content more directly than Demi’s previous efforts. The album features pop princess Ariana Grande, emerging singers Noah Cyrus and Sam Fischer, along with rapper Saweetie.

The album opener, “Anyone”, gives a clear picture of what’s to come. It gives an insight into her journey to sobriety, but isn’t afraid to talk about the difficulties she’s had during it. Her struggles are shown with much more explicit detail in the title track, “Dancing With The Devil”. She’s never spoken about her struggles with drug abuse and relapse so brazenly, especially since, for years, she was mostly seen as an ex-Disney star. The lines “it’s just a little white line, I’ll be fine, / but soon, that little white line is a little glass pipe” are incredibly raw and direct

Next up is an emotional tune, “ICU (Madison’s Lullaby)”. This song addresses the effect Lovato’s overdose had on her little sister, Madison. She tells Madison that she’ll be there for her no matter what, and that she believes in her sister. 

The album deals with more than just her struggles with addiction, though. When Lovato sang “I was blind, but now I see clearly / I see you” in “ICU”, it was more than just clever wordplay. In her documentary series of the same name, Lovato said she suffered from temporary blindness after her overdose and still suffers from blind spots. Lovato also addresses her eating disorder in the song “The Way You Don’t Look At Me”.

Lovato goes on to talk about other events in her life, good and bad, since her overdose. The first section features a string of unabashed songs that highlight the singer’s harsh truth, telling everyone listening to take her as she is, all or nothing. “California Sober” explains that she’s tired of being known for her addiction issues, instead talking about her many redemptions over the years. 

Other bright spots include the dark yet breezy “Melon Cake”, “Met Him Last Night” with Grande, “The Kind of Lover That I Am” and “My Girlfriends Are My Boyfriends” with Saweetie. The album also ends with the reflective and introspective “Good Place”, which gives an update on where Lovato is currently in life. 
With 19 songs and 57 minutes of content, ‘Dancing With The Devil…The Art of Starting Over’ is truthful and endearing, leaving listeners with a more nuanced impression her previous albums couldn’t. Though the project doesn’t live up to the standard Lovato set with her previous album, ‘Tell Me You Love’, it’s far from a bad project. This is her most raw era to date and the title lives up to the album.

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