Release Date: Apr 26, 2019
Record label: Atlantic
We were led to believe LOVE + FEAR would be MARINA 's most authentic album. She took away half of her stage name and appears standing naked on the cover, filtered black and white. But without the characters she relied on in earlier albums, LOVE + FEAR lacks a little, well, character. The genuine nature she seems to be striving for shines through on tracks like lead single "Handmade Heaven" and "To Be Human", but it makes choices like the awkwardly stuffed-in Clean Bandit collaboration at track four stick out all the more uncomfortably.
An album of two halves, this is a singular record from a bold talent. It doesn't always land perfectly, but Marina's ingenuity can't be denied Marina Diamandis has a habit of ushering in new musical eras with red herrings. After a three-year hiatus that almost prompted her to give up music altogether, the pop star returned at the top end of 2019 with a new name ('the Diamonds' are no more, it's just Marina now) and a song that landed a little lighter than her previous bangers.
The fourth album by Marina Diamandis, and her first without the mantle of "Marina and the Diamonds," arrives after four years spent battling depression and self-doubt. Her first priority in composing Love + Fear seems to have been returning to a place where music could be enjoyable, and generative, and healing; in a word, safe. Listening to the record is like slipping into a meditation exercise, with Marina as soft, soothing sloganeer: Close your eyes, and imagine you're on a beach; just breathe, and let your worries disappear.
Marina has never fallen short of a concept and after nearly stepping away from the music scene altogether, she's dropped The Diamonds and given birth to a whole new artist. The idea behind this album focuses on psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross' argument that there are only two primary emotions (love and fear), and if you are in a place of fear, you cannot be in a place of love. This two-parter is Marina's take on this argument - finding positives in both emotions.