Concept albums have become more and more commonplace in modern music. Many artists such as Kendrick Lamar, J Cole, Kid Cudi and countless more have released albums that, as opposed to telling many stories, tell a singular and connected story. Whether it be Lamar speaking on his upbringing or Kid Cudi’s “The Man on The Moon” with Common’s excellent narration, these countless albums have told captivating stories of various trials and tribulations either faced by said musicians or about an entirely different person.

 

Occasionally, some artists may pair a separate project such as a movie to accompany their albums. One popular example of pairing two pieces of media together would be the brilliantly done “Runaway” by Kanye West. “Runaway” tells the story of West finding an angel and showing her the many ups and downs of the tumultuous world that we find ourselves, all as the many excellent songs from “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” play throughout the short film. Although it’s a bit eccentric in the very way that only Kanye West could make, it’s certainly an excellent way of merging two different types of media together.

 

Last Friday, Canadian electro-pop artist Lights released her fifth album entitled “Skin & Earth” and decided to create a concept album. While having released many fantastic albums previously, this is the first album of her’s to be a concept album. According to Lights’ official website, “Skin & Earth” tells the story of protagonist Enaia Jin and how she’s “led down a dark path by new lovers that reveal a twisted fantasy world and her own true nature. Set in a post-apocalyptic future where corporations rule, this adventurous tale of loneliness, deceit and self-discovery begins here.”

 

“Skin & Earth” tells a brilliant story about overcoming oppression, hatred and being comfortable in one’s own skin while also discussing empowerment in one’s self. Being the exceptionally talented and innovative artist that Lights is, she paired a different type of media along with the new album. Although, it’s an incredibly popular type of media that’s incredibly successful in it’s own right, just not often associated with musical artists and their albums.

 

(Nerdist)

Along with the album “Skin & Earth”, Lights created an in-depth comic book series to explore the themes of her album further. While the album does an excellent job in portraying the story of Enaia Jin through music, the eight-issue comic series goes in much greater detail in terms of Jin’s backstory, involving heartbreak from the destroyed relationship of a former paramour and overcoming an extremely oppressive government.

 

The songs from the “Skin & Earth” tie directly into the comic series in many ways. The initial track after a brief interlude, entitled “Skydiving” begins with Lights or in this case the protagonist En Jin, telling the story about falling for someone and how the sense of adoration feels similarly to the action of skydiving itself. Yet, as the complex story of oppression and overcoming obstacles progresses, so do the many themes of the album.

 

The very next track is entitled “Savage” and tells the exact opposite of “Skydiving”, where Jin and the subject of her adoration apparently end their relationship. Although the main single from the album, “Giants”, actually occurs during the fifth issue of the comic series which hasn’t been released as of yet, it’s a visceral tune of overcoming all that holds you back.

 

I’ve personally been a fan of Lights ever since I saw a Buzzfeed gif of her smiling. While she’s been my Woman Crush Wednesday on many occasions, her musical abilities and her versatility in terms of combining two genres of media together show her absolute and pure talent. “Skin & Earth” is currently on Spotify and Lights is touring with PVRIS currently so certainly go to her mesmerizing show if you can.

 

Are you a Lights fan? If so, Tweet me at @CaptainKasoff because I think she’s awesome.