Lady Gaga is back! After countless speeches about “100 people in a room,” scooping up a Best Original Song Oscar for “Shallow,” one of the best songs of the past decade, and an award-winning performance in the 2018 remake of A Star Is Born, Mother Monster has returned with her first solo pop single since 2017: “Stupid Love.” The new track previews Gaga’s fifth solo studio album, Chromatica.
With “Stupid Love,” Gaga harnesses the beauty of the simplicity of her A Star Is Born/Joanne songwriting and blends it with her unique ability to craft golden nuggets of electropop perfection. Pop music has been experiencing a resurgence of different variations of disco, europop, and 80s synthpop recently, with songs like The Weeknd‘s “Blinding Lights”; Dua Lipa’s “Don’t Start Now” and “Physical”; and Doja Cat’s “Say So.” Gaga achieves a sort of post-punk electro-synthpop confection that blends aggressive synths with a remarkably, for the most part, reserved vocal performance. The song does not waste a single second; from the very first millisecond, the synths begin hammering a euphoric energy into the atmosphere of the track. That euphoria fully erupts in the sublime hook which, admittedly, sounds dated at first, but feels fresher with every subsequent listen. The pre-chorus is expertly and steadily paced which makes the explosive hook even more exuberant. The only drawback that “Stupid Love” has is that Gaga’s primarily gruff vocal performance paired with the synths can be quite noisy and abrasive at times. Thankfully, that issue is somewhat alleviated by the softer vocals and glimpses of falsetto on the bridge.
The track isn’t too complex for it’s own good, a problem that plagued most of ARTPOP and parts of Born This Way. There’s growth here, even if it isn’t obvious at first glance. “Stupid Love” is a worthy reintroduction for Lady Gaga: The Pop Star. We all can’t wait to see where she goes next as she gears up to unleash Chromatica onto the world.