Heartthrob, Canadian duo Tegan and Sara’s seventh full-length album, is a perfectly delicious slice of synth based indie-pop. It’s a big step in the pop direction for the duo, and a significant departure from the folk-rock sound they made their name with.
Peppered with anthemic lyrics, it’s strongly written pop that really packs a punch and is a welcome development for the girls. It might just be the record that propels them into the mainstream and any one of these upbeat numbers could be the one to do that.
It’s fun, girly pop that makes reference to the twins’ own teen pop icons. Madonna and Cyndi Lauper are both paid homage to, and there’s definitely a reference to modern pop queens like Marina mingled in there too.
Closer and Goodbye, Goodbye are infectiously marketable tracks, but the ballads haven’t disappeared either. How Come You Don’t Want Me (co-written by Jack Antonoff of fun.) is one such ballad that throws in a different sound in the midst of all these enjoyable earworms. It makes way for a couple more down-tempo numbers including Love They Say, the only track on the album where we hear Tegan and Sara’s familiar guitar strumming. Shock To Your System is a stellar closer to an album that manages to successfully combine that perfectly shimmery pop, all the while dealing with more serious themes like unfaithfulness, loneliness and heartbreak. Seven albums on, the refreshing Heartthrob is proof that Tegan and Sara’s sound is as strong as ever.