Ingrid Michaelson has been on the verge of pop stardom for nearly a decade as the Vanessa Carlton to Sara Bareilles’ Michelle Branch. And while she’s had two albums make the Top 10, and a few Hot 100 hits, she’s yet to have her A Thousand Miles, All You Wanted, or Love Song.
It’s not for lack of suitable material. Over the years, Ingrid has had songs with the capability of penetrating pop culture that simply didn’t. Maybe, Be OK and Girls Chase Boys are all accessible earworms with undeniable hooks.
As a singer/songwriter in the viral age without network television dramas like The OC and One Tree Hill to further push her music, she’s compensated with some of the most creative music videos on a budget ever.
On her new album It Doesn’t Have To Make Sense, Ingrid covers much of the same ground she’s treaded before. She does her best Taylor Swift-esque sleepover with the girls on Hell No and Celebrate, and revisits her own brand of layered pop on Light Me Up and Miss America. She’s having fun while sticking with the familiar style of witty pop and smart anthems.
Elsewhere, she reminds us of her versatility on Another Life, a theatrical ballad about her recent separation from her husband, while I Remember Her is powerfully genuine as a stripped-down piano ballad about the passing of her mother. It cuts through the comfortable familiarity of the rest of the record with its placement directly in the middle rather than as an afterthought at the end. This song is the one you need to hear.
It Doesn’t Have To Make Sense isn’t a huge step in any direction for Ingrid. She remains in comfortable territory with sometimes uncomfortable or painful material, and enough of a range in sound to satisfy anyone who has previously invested in any of her music. Where her last album Lights Out served the purpose of expanding her reach, this one maintains her stature as the one to watch – one viral video at a time.
1. Light Me Up
2. Whole Lot Of Heart
3. Miss America
4. Another Life
5. I Remember Her
6. Drink You Gone
7. Hell No
8. Still The One
10. Old Days