Carly Rae Jepsen publicity 2022 CR: Meredith Jenks

Carly Rae Jepsen – The Loveliest Time


Gone are the days of The Loneliest Time, we’re in The Loveliest Time era, and it is truly the loveliest time to be in. For her sixth studio album, Carly Rae Jepsen allowed herself to feel things that happened to her during different times of her life and then deduce what ultimately brought her joy. Yes, it may be filled with mostly love songs – if you choose to look at it that way – but it’s also about living life to the fullest and fearlessly going after the things we love, especially if it happens to be a cute guy we meet at the bar or on the dancefloor.

The Loveliest Time was preceded by only one single, “Shy Boy,” which Jepsen herself says was inspired by a time well spent flirting with a random guy. “You’re pretty, we’re drinkin’, so I say what I’m thinkin’ / “How come everybody’s dancin’ but you?” A deep conversation, a last-minute invitation / Yeah, I’m gonna make this easy for you,” she sings of her boldness in the track that has been praised for its enchanting melodies. It mirrors Kylie Minogue’s successful single, “Padam Padam” – another song about fancying a random stranger at the bar and having the courage to make a connection.

Prior to the release of this recent album, Jepsen explained how The Loneliest Time transitioned to The Loveliest Time, writing, “After a season of hibernation comes the season of blossoming🌻. I got to know loneliness and discover the beauty in it. The loneliest time taught me that growth comes from being planted in darkness. But now the world has opened itself back up again and in turn so have we. It’s time for celebration and for all the lessons we have learned to burst into joyful action. The Loveliest Time…”

The opening track “Anything To Be With You” is a happy song about the excitement we feel to share our experiences with a lover. “Anything you wanna do / I really wanna do with you/I can be friends with your friends, your friends,” she sings, adding that she wants to feel whatever her lover feels.

Diving into the album, my first thought was dream pop, and we all know that it’s something Jepsen does so well. There’s a sort of playfulness displayed throughout the tracks on the album that makes it possible for certain lyrics to just jump out and startle you, and make you smile. One of those that had such a profound effect on me was the line from “Psychedelic Switch” that goes “Meditating on your lips.” The Loveliest Time is Jepsen taking away all of love’s negativity to introduce us to all the fun happy and euphoric aspirations of love, and I feel like it’s a polar opposite to Kelly Clarkson’s chemistry. Where Clarkson makes you kind of loathe – loathe’s a very strong word, let’s say hate – the idea of love, Jepsen makes you want to feel it, like a teenager having a crush for the first time.

Even though the songs on this album are ones that weren’t picked to be on “The Loneliest Time,” they don’t feel like rejects. They’re all still solid songs that make you sing, dance and smile, and I can certainly see more than a few seeing us through this summer and beyond. If I found a bone to pick with this project, it’s that there isn’t a mind-blowing track to tie it all together.