Future Nostalgia – Dua Lipa

★ ★ 

For an artist that hasn’t been around for long, Dua Lipa has enjoyed immense success. She’s dominated the radio and was the most streamed female artist on Spotify in 2019. Coming into this latest promotional cycle for her 2nd full-length, Dua Lipa was poised for world domination. Armed with a new set of sing-along choruses, she was due to be on every late-night talk show and festival stage for the foreseeable future. As all our collective hopes and dreams have been parked, Dua Lipa is also left wondering if her latest output alone will be enough to maintain her momentum.

Future Nostalgia wouldn’t have needed to be extraordinary under normal circumstances but that is not the hand Dua Lipa has been dealt. The album has highs – ‘Cool’ is bite-your-hand catchy and ‘Don’t Start Now’ deftly manoeuvres between house and funk – but overall, it’s short of ambition. ‘Love Again’ takes that famous violin motif from White Town’s ‘Your Woman’ and lazily duct-tapes it to the intro and breakdown. The opener ‘Future Nostalgia’ has an empty female empowerment message straight from the liberal feminist guide to marketing: “I know you’re not used to a female alpha”. While you are all wondering whether capitalism will survive the pandemic, I’ll be hedging my bets that Future Nostalgia will not.


Niall O’Shaughnessy – Former Music Editor