Kim Petras – Malibu

TRACK REVIEW: Kim’s latest single is a great summer bop in a year with no summer.

TRACK REVIEW: Kim's latest single is a great summer bop in a year with no summer.

It’s only been three months since the last Kim Petras single dropped (‘Reminds Me’ in February), but wow that just feels so long ago doesn’t it?  These few months later, the world into which ‘Malibu’ is being released very different from the one that ‘Reminds Me’ was.  It is especially hard to think about these tracks outside of the context of current global events considering the stylistic differences between the songs themselves

Malibu Single Cover via kimpetras.com
Reminds Me cover via BunHead

Lyrically, the songs deal with similar themes with Kim struggling to get over a guy she’s hung up on, but while ‘Reminds Me’ was a brooding trap-pop cut, ‘Malibu’ is an effervescent slice of synthy dance-pop.  It’s easy to imagine the thought process going into the construction of this song – bouncy, danceable, lyrically centered around a summer drink… On paper, it’s a perfect single to drop right at the onset of beach party season.  But of course, for most of us, beach parties feel more akin to fairytales than actual events to plan for (and make playlists for) this year.

Despite the unfortunate circumstances surrounding its release, though, ‘Malibu’ is still very good and really, really fun.  The disco-inspired guitar riff runs perfectly alongside the groovy bass and percussion.  And Kim’s voice sounds as good (if not better) here than it ever has before.

Really, this song sounds more like a return to Kim’s pre-clarity sound more than anything else.  The melodies (in the verses especially) are very reminiscent of tracks like ‘Hillside Boys’, which many fans consider to be one of her best works.  It remains to be seen what the rest of 2020 has in store in terms of new Kim Petras music.  If one thing is for certain, though, it’s that now more than ever, the world needs bouncy bops (even if we don’t have any beach party playlists to put them on).

Listen to ‘Malibu’ below, and let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Postnote:  Unfortunately, as with nearly all of Kim’s music, this song does come with both a songwriting and production credit from the infamous Dr. Luke.  In this case he is using the name MADE IN CHINA – he has taken to using a number of assorted pseudonyms recently – for his production credit.  It is almost a cliché at this point to discuss how unfortunate it is to have Kim’s music constantly be tainted by his presence.

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