has been slowly releasing more and more information about her upcoming album. The pop icon finally came out with the lead single "Perfect Illusion
," which although a bit screechy, hints at her returning to her old roots. In addition to that, she's told several people that this next record will be moving away from 2013's Artpop.
She told Yahoo
last year, "But I will just tell you that it's a wonderful, soul-searching experience. And it's very unlike the last album in that way." Many are speculating that Gaga is returning to her old sound and after hearing the latest single, that may be true. But as info about the album unravels, we see more of her collaborators, and as we see more of her collaborators, we start to wonder...
Of course, Gaga has worked with some huge names. Mark Ronson is producing her entire album and in addition to that, she has had some studio time with Elton John, Paul McCartney, Nile Rodgers, and Josh Homme. NO BIG DEAL. Although the big names stun us, what we find more interesting is the indie collaborators.
Let's start with the single she already released. Yes, "Perfect Illusion" was produced by Mark Ronson and Bieber-collaborator BloodPop, but it was also produced by Tame Impala's Kevin Parker. Parker has never produced a song for a major pop star before, unless you want to count Rihanna's cover of "New Person, Same Old Mistakes" on ANTI
, which was more of a karaoke version of the already-produced track. A few days before the single dropped, Gaga also joined Tame Impala on stage during their final song at FYF Fest
. Was she trying to let people know that she hangs with the cool kids now?
Speaking of hanging with cool kids, Gaga was also spotted dancing with Father John Misty in an empty venue (post-show) on his Snapchat. First she's hanging with Kevin Parker and now FJM? At first I thought, "Oh, so they're just friends who hang out. That's cool," but lo and behold, just a few days later, it's announced that she has collaborated with him on her new album. It's unclear if he's singing or writing on it but either way, it's a weird combo.
Oh and there's this photo from Gaga's snapchat with FJM:
Another collaborator we discovered is Beck. Now, Beck is pretty successful in his own right, but he's no pop star like Gaga. The thought of them making music together is another weird visual. Apparently it's a "dance" track
. "With Beck, who I made this great dance song with, we just hung out for an hour talking in Malibu talking, just shooting the breeze," she told Elvis Duran
about the process.
But the indie collab we're most excited to hear is Gaga with Florence + The Machine's Florence Welch. Gaga explained that she wanted a female vocalist for the song and she chose Welch because she's one of the best singers (rightfully so), but once again, it's a very unexpected combo. We already know the song is called "Hey Girl" and it's most likely going to be a bad-ass-femme-powerhouse-vocalist duet.
So, is Gaga going indie? We can't picture her completely losing her plastic pop coat, but maybe she's trying to fit into the cooler crowd. We can relate this situation to Carly Rae Jepsen, who sold like, zero copies of her latest record EMOTION
but collaborated with indie artists like Blood Orange and received so much critical praise that she slyly switched over to the indie pop scene. Maybe after seeing how Artpop
was a bust, Gaga's attempting to make the same transition as Jepsen. We'll find out soon enough, as the record is set to be released this year.