Album review: Pure Heroine by Lorde

By  | Jun 22, 2020, 01:48 PM 

Quick facts… 7 November 2013. The day Ella Maria Lani Yelich-O'Connor turned 17. We’re placing bets on the fact that she was not surrounded by giggling girls of the same age discussing Bieber or fashion. If there was a cake, it was probably quite minimalistic in its presentation… much like the cover to Lorde’s Pure Heroine CD. But it probably had a taste that made people want another slice.

Ella Maria Lani Yelich-O'Connor from New Zealand is no ordinary 17-year old. Her stage name is Lorde and she is fast claiming the title of Breakout Artist of 2013.

Best tracks… Tennis Court, described by Billboard Magazine as having "detached attitude and woozy production,” 400 Lux (named after a clear day's sunrise/sunset illuminance) and Ribs, a song where the singer “discovers her maturity and grown-up problems.”

What others have to say… Reviewed before she turned 17: This 16-year-old's first album is so smart that it begins with the line "Don't you think that it's boring how people talk?" and ends with the statement, "Let them talk." In between is an exploration into the soul of a quiet girl in the Internet age, trying to feel something and not envy everything.

What we have to say… In a world, where some 16 and 17-year olds make the headlines for attacking their teachers or fellow students, Lorde shows a grasp of life that some 40-year olds are still struggling with. Some albums you can listen to and then you take it out of the CD player and move on to something else. Pure Heroine is not such an album. Hauntingly beautiful, this is a strong contender for album of the year in our books.

It makes us wanna… “…close our eyes and imagine a world without young singers smoking weed on stage or assaulting construction equipment to attract attention.”  

In her own words…  In an interview with, this is what she had to say about her choice of stage name: "My name is Ella, that's who I am at school, hanging out with friends, while I'm doing homework. But when I'm up on stage, Lorde is a character. My friends actually find that really difficult to digest, separating me from the theatrical character they see on stage; but they're getting used to it. When I was trying to come up with a stage name, I thought ‘Lord' was super rad, but really masculine—ever since I was a little kid, I have been really into royals and aristocracy. So to make Lord more feminine, I just put an ‘e' on the end! Some people think it's religious, but it's not."

Score… Turn the volume up to 9.

Pictures: Pure Heroine album artwork