2012 X Factor Star Releases New Album

The cover for Bea's latest album,

The cover for Bea's latest album, "aurora."

The cover for Bea's latest album, "aurora."

By Nicole Zelazko, Arts & Entertainment Editor

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Flashback to X Factor, Season 2, our first glimpse of Beatrice Miller, better known as “Bea.” After placing ninth and impressing the audience as 13-year-old in 2012, Bea is now back, but this time, 19, and two albums deep. Her latest album, “aurora,” was released on Feb. 23, just a week after her 19th birthday.

The album consists of music from all three of her 2017 EPs: chapter one: blue, chapter two: red and chapter three: yellow, each chapter containing three songs, as well as an addition of five previously unreleased tracks. Each chapter represents a stage of Bea in her previous relationship — in sequential order — from realizing her relationship is a delusion, moving on from the heartbreak, the reclamation of self-confidence, and, finally, Aurora, the symbol of women’s empowerment. The final chapter of this year-long story is the perfect wrap-up of the stages many go through when going through a tough breakup.

The album of her personal journey of her transition from adolescence to adulthood touches topics such as breakups, self-love, slut shaming, and piecing yourself back together. The album works towards sorting out teenage girl’s struggles in today’s society and gives us solutions to climb over those walls.

The album’s three separate categories are sorted out by song, and each stage is fairly easy to tell.

The album opens with ‘song like you,’ giving the listeners an instant shock. Little 13 year old Bea Miller sounds like this now? It’s a surprise, but it’s a good surprise. More than good. The song is an anthem about a relationship holding you back from living life, a situation that turns from good to bad in the nick of time. The underlying sadness in her voice quickly contrasts with the upbeat tone in the song, but it shows that despite the sad moments, the happy ones live on too.

Following is “burning bridges,” a track about realizing the relationship she is in is only hindering her ability to grow as a person. She uses the common phrase of “burning bridges” as a way to show how she realizes she needs to distance herself, though she still feels drawn back to the said guy. The album takes a turn during the following song, “motherlove,” a song about self empowerment and keeping your head up. This girl-power anthem is one of my favorites on the album, it makes you want to put your hands in the air and belt out that all you need is yourself.

Switching gears from the upbeat sing-a-long comes a sadder, slow song- “i can’t breathe.” The heavy vocals against the piano creates a feeling of suffocation and being trapped. This song is paired with a sense of vulnerability and gives the listeners a glimpse into the softer side of Bea.

But, not for long. One of my favorites on the album, “like that,” has a killer beat complimented by the raspy voice of Miller. She comments on how the one who can make you fall can also help you realize to get up and stand taller. “buy me diamonds” makes you want to get on your feet and dance around- why ask for love if you can ask for diamonds? The sarcastic tone is, still, almost seductive.

My personal two favorite songs, “outside” and “girlfriend,” speak for themselves. They take the audience into a position we’ve all been before- a little bit out of our minds. The beats has been stuck in my head for days. But, here I am, continuing to listen to the album, and realizing I can’t pick a favorite song. Though the remaining songs can have essays written on them because of their genius lyrics, “S.L.U.T,” a song challenging slut-shaming, and “crash&burn” deserve to be played on repeat.

Though each and every song tells a story unique to Bea, each teenage girl can relate to the common themes in each track. The genius lyrics are often times masked with the vivid baseline, but it does not lessen the blow. For the girls out there looking for some new music, don’t look further than this. This is it, and she is the next big thing. So listen now, and thank me later.

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