Funhouse

Studio Album by released in 2008

Funhouse review

Pink demonstrates her vulnerable side

After the giddy success of the sophomore effort Missundaztood, a somewhat less interesting third album Try This and again quite an impressive fourth one, I’m Not Dead, Alecia Moore much better known as Pink has confirmed her reputation of one of the best and unique pop rock performers so good that she can hardly allow herself a failure now. One could well expect her to take a short time-out after working so hard and fruitfully on her fourth recording and actually she did. Only, during those two years that have passed since the release of I’m Not Dead she has obviously not been wasting her time. What the unpredictable artist has prepared this year exceeds all expectations. Album Funhouse, with the lead single So What already being Pink’s first number one on Billboard Hot 100 proves to be her frankest creation so far demonstrating her vulnerable side and following almost immediately her recent divorce from Carey Hart. Her ballads have probably never sounded so soulful and sincere as on Funhouse, and their contrast with more positive mid-tempo compositions has never been so striking.

Opposite attitudes on Funhouse

The album consists of two extremes, i.e. sadness and happiness, joy and despair, despondency and entertaining. Nevertheless it is called Funhouse, so apparently it is the positive that Pink prefers to see in life. Yet as the singer has confessed herself this title is metaphoric symbolizing life and love when we do not recognize ourselves in mirrors and wonder what we are doing here and still every time it is interesting and we come back there. Besides, there are politically oriented songs on the album which are already traditional for Pink, the brightest example in this respect being Ave Mary A. single So What is speaking to oneself after the divorce and realizing the new state of things, Sober is understanding that sometimes you can be strong enough not to need anybody’s help. A soulful, penetrating in its calmness ballad I Don't Believe You cries over the ended relationship whereas an introspective rock composition One Foot Wrong dwells on losing control. The sadness of a more up-tempo song Please Don't Leave Me is close to all who have ever survived a breakup, besides, Pink rethinks her behavior here, too, and recalls the words she said fighting which have now returned to her. Classic for the singer, vivid song Bad Influence seems to tell: no matter what happens this is still the bold rebel having her own opinion about everything while a contagious title composition is filled with her willing to burn the bridges and go forward. One of the most beautiful on the record is Crystal Ball, Pink’s own favorite song built on an unusual metaphor and filled with the strongest feelings, while on Mean she is trying to understand how the relationships get worse. The record closes with almost a danceable rock song This Is How It Goes Down featuring Travis McCoy, not the most optimistic one, but confident enough not to be hopeless.

Not a bit of make-believe

Each time when some unpleasant events happen in an artist’s life, such as divorce, music is always there to help, but in this case the creative work is no entertainment anymore but a way to bare one’s heart. Pink’s fifth album is so honest that it astounds with naked emotions and texts that render in a wonderfully precise way the singer’s feeling finding response in the hearts of everyone who knows how it feels after a hard breakup. On the most heartfelt song Crystal Ball her vocals almost does not turn to crying and there is not a bit of make-believe in it for the composition was recorded just once and did not undergo any changes on the album. Yet in spite of everything Pink has done everything possible not to make Funhouse a typical schmaltzy breakup album. In particular Moore has elected to work on the album far away from home going to London to record with Eg White and to Stockholm to Max Martin. Besides, Billy Mann has also worked on a number of compositions. On the whole Funhouse is similar to Pink’s other works and at the same time it is different: on the one hand we hear the same hot party maker sound in politics and on the other hand, for the first time she has shown her weakness of a normal person who has just simply failed to save the marriage.