Former Superchick front woman, and new mother, Tricia Baumhardt has resurfaced with her shining new solo project. This album reads like letters of advice, written by a woman who has been there and done all of that.
What I find particularly interesting about Radiate is that it still has an uncanny resemblance to Tricia’s prior work with Superchick. Early on in her career their focus majored quite a bit on the idea of “girlpower” (such as songs like “Barlow Girls” and “One Girl Revolution”) and these ideas became central to the ideals of Superchick. Move forward to over a decade ahead, and Tricia’s approach to the same topics doesn’t seem to have changed much. However now she is approaching her song writing in the role of a mother rather than an inexperienced teenager trying to get her foot in the music business door.
This is a very upbeat, feel-good album. From the very beginning to the very end you can feel what Tricia is trying to achieve with this album. The message that clearly presents itself to the listener is that, you are beautifully and perfectly made by God. A message that I really agree with because in today’s social climate a lot of emphasis is put on conforming to this “perfect image” that the media sets for us all. The thinking behind this album however revolves around how no matter what you look like you are beautiful, and that beauty is not all about what is on the outside. A way of thinking that I wish would spread itself across the globe.
Musically I really enjoyed this album, the tracks and lyrics are very catchy and I found myself singing along to some of the songs the first time I listened to the album. Tricia has a very strong pop-style voice that will be really appealing to a wide range of listeners. From a lyrical standpoint however I, as a male listener, found it very hard to connect with the lyrics and get into the feeling of the album because these songs are clearly meant for a female audience. Now don’t get me wrong, I love women and there is nothing wrong with having a female oriented album at all. All I am saying is that I couldn’t really enjoy this album fully because I didn’t feel like it was meant for me. However it is still a really great album and if I were a female it would really appeal to me, and make me feel good listening to it. With that in mind I could see this being a really great gift to buy for a friend or loved one, or just somebody who you think may need some words of encouragement, but you just don’t know how to go about doing it.
While there are plenty of colorful, danceable moments, the honest lyrics emit a solid message of truth, as if Tricia is having a heart-to-heart with a room of teen girls. On “Daughter of the King,” she tells them what true beauty looks like, singing, “A dress won’t make a princess, and jewels won’t make a queen/ You were made for more than this/ You’re worth more than what you see.” And on “Different,” she pens one of her most insightful lyrics, worthy of quoting: “You can’t make a difference without being different.”
Overall I really enjoyed listening to this album, as it put a smile on my face. The feel-good message of this album would be a great addition to any upbeat playlist, Christian or non-Christian.
This week’s Song of The Week: “Everything As Loss”
Stay out of traffic Ben Affleck