Kelsea Ballerini has been insanely busy since her debut album The First Time. She’s planning a wedding, touring, and has been promoting her sophomore album, Unapologetically. I’ve learned a lot from her throughout the years and especially from her first album- mainly how to grow up. Now we’re both a little older and she has a way of connecting with me through music that few people do. This album moves you forward to each brand new day, telling us that everything works out the way it’s supposed to. From heartbreak to healing, and then to falling in love again.
“Graveyard” is the lowest of low that a person is at when they deal with a broken heart. They realize the person that has made them happy for so long just sees them as another number.
“Hopeless, broken girl
And you just take her, break her heart
Let her rest in peace
Right there next to me”
The very next song is “Miss Me More,” which takes the breakup into our hands and gives us the power to finally be us again. Sometimes, we lose ourselves in a relationship that we are desperately trying to save that we can’t find our old self anywhere. We lose friends and our whole world is wrapped up in one person. At the end of this though, we understand that we may miss our ex, we miss us more.
The track “Roses” tugs at you because it’s full of memories that you had to let go. Trying to figure out how this relationship that was once so classic burned out.
“Thought we could grow it
Beautiful for a moment
We were roses
But seasons had to change
And like flowers they bloom and withered away”
Starting with “Machine Heart.” It took listening to this song a couple of times to see what Kelsea is getting at. She doesn’t apologize for having a real heart and knowing that it still works even after all that heartbreak.
“I kept it quiet
But know you’ll hear it scream
Cause good or bad or right or wrong
Its finally found its beat”
I related to this song the most. Just moving to Nashville from Ohio, “In Between” talks about the healing process and being in that middle ground of life. We still want to be kids, but we can’t quite claim we’re still young. We’re screaming that we’re adults, but we can’t get the concept down. Maybe it’s moving away for the first time or leaving a long-term relationship and figuring out how to feel again. Whatever that middle ground is, you almost feel stuck- like you’ll never get out the of quicksand you’re in.
“In between, home, town and a neon city
In between, underestimated and overexpectated
Who I was and who I’m gonna be”
Falling in love again.
Everyone has that relationship that absolutely destroyed them and they think, “is this it?” Kelsea makes it clear that even though you think it may be the “End of the World,” sometimes you have to go through the worst pain to get to the best love you’ll ever know.
“The sky kept falling, but we danced in it
I was done with love, but second chance did it
You cleared the smoke and picked up the wreckage
Got to go through hell to get to heaven”
I would argue that “I Hate Love Songs” is the biggest hit on the album. It takes all of the cliches we hear in songs, The Hallmark Channel, weddings, or the Notebook and smashes them. Saying my life isn’t perfect, you’re not perfect, but I love you. He doesn’t have to be perfect because neither are you, but this love is almost perfect and that’s enough.
“We were drunk when we met so we don’t know our anniversary
And I’m far too vain to kiss in the rain
The clouds, they aren’t numbered to nine
And you make me feel something but it sure as hell ain’t butterflies
I hate love songs
Yeah, I really do
I hate love songs”
As if this album couldn’t teach us more… she decides to end with “Legends,” the leadoff single from this album. This song is just for you and only you because at the end of the day that’s all you have…
Track List: Unapologetically
“Miss Me More”
“Get Over Yourself”
“End of the World”
“I Hate Love Songs”