We had the privilege to listen to Love For Sale some time ago, and we are finally able to share our review with you!
Love For Sale: Review by Matt and @aviintheroom
7 years after the release of the monumental Cheek to Cheek, Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett are back again with a jewel of a follow-up: Love For Sale, a new jazz album made of covers of songs by legendary composer Cole Porter, born out of a desire to solidify the chemistry between the two legends.
All Little Monsters will remember the shock of the first transition between ARTPOP (Lady Gaga’s 4th studio album) and Cheek to Cheek, the first jazz project from Tony and Gaga. The record marked a profound change of direction for Gaga: from the prominent EDM sound and shocking imagery of ARTPOP and her other previous albums, to a raw, stripped-down and classy style that received rave reviews all over the world, proving to the general public that Gaga still had much to say. Not only was Cheek to Cheek an example of Gaga’s masterful ability to shape-shift, but it also introduced her younger audience to a genre that is more often appreciated only by older generations.
Cheek to Cheek paved the way for something much more profound than a successful album (which earned a Grammy Award and was supported by a sold-out world tour): a beautiful and long-lasting friendship between two artists that would change one another’s lives forever. Gaga even symbolized their bond through getting a trumpet drawn by Tony tattooed on her right arm.
Although for Tony, the album was an addition to an already long list of successful studio albums (61 this year), his connection to Gaga swayed the crooner to ask her for another collaboration. He invited her to work on a passion project of his that had been years in the making: a Cole Porter tribute album.
Love For Sale is special for many reasons: it is being referred to as Tony’s final studio album, due to his ongoing battle with Alzheimer’s disease. His illness forced him to cancel his upcoming tour. He bid farewell to his performing career with a pair of concerts at Radio City in New York, One Last Time, alongside Lady Gaga.
Many of the songs on Love For Sale are far removed from the swing-y, at times humorous sonorities of Cheek to Cheek. Here, we have a more mature, sophisticated body of work, which is reflected in both Gaga’s vocal quality and the soaring orchestrations. Gaga’s growth and maturity between jazz albums is evident, and beautifully compliments the timeless talents of Tony Bennett.
This album, like Cheek to Cheek, finds special little moments of intimacy and sincerity between the pair. Subtle jokes and improvisations, such as Tony and Gaga’s laughs during I’ve Got You Under My Skin, or Gaga’s promiscuous ‘meow’ in You’re The Top, are a delight. But we also notice that it’s somehow different from the last jazz album, more serious, classy, almost like the complexity of the songs themselves pushed the duo to aim for perfection.
We can’t help but marvel at (and cry at) Lady Gaga’s perfect vibrato in her touchy solo track Do I Love You, originally performed by Ella Fitzgerald, and our jaws drop at Tony’s super-strong vocal steadiness in his solo Just One Of Those Things. But we also laugh often, thanks to silly and irreverent tracks like I Get a Kick Out of You, Love For Sale, or romantic ones like I Concentrate On You and It's De-Lovely, each equipped with catchy choruses that stick with you for the rest of the day. A special mention goes to Gaga for her ability to transform Let’s Do It from lullaby to jazz fest with a theatrical change of tune midway through the song.
Behind it all, the winning duo not only proves their ability to produce a strong, solid record once again, but they share with us a perfect combination of camaraderie and love that can be heard in every song, filterless and without tweaking. To appreciate it fully, allow the music to guide you through your day. Listen to the lyrics, and enjoy the pure talent of the two icons delivering them.
We know that some of you have yet to return from space, where we’ve all been partying to Chromatica and Dawn of Chromatica, but we urge you to come back down to Earth soon. Love For Sale is almost here, a celebration of jazz for the 21st century that is as humble and genuine as it is magnificent.
Lady Gaga is gearing up for the release of her new jazz album with Tony Bennett, Love For Sale, through a one-of-a-kind online performance brought to you by Westfield! Set to take place on September 30, the performance will feature selections from the new album performed by Gaga in an intimate setting. To register for the online stream of Lady Gaga Celebrates Love For Sale, click here or on the poster above.