Review: Todrick Hall's 'Algorhythm' Perfect For Pride

by Noe Kamelamela

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Wednesday June 1, 2022

Review: Todrick Hall's 'Algorhythm' Perfect For Pride

Multi-hyphenate gay artist Todrick Hall brings "ALGORYTHM" to a public ready for a sweaty post-COVID booster shot Pride season. The tracking here is a lovely throwback to older styles of albums, where each piece flows simply into the next. Truthfully, the intro track, which could have been the main focus, is a lush number that samples all the styles contained within this album.

Hall has continued his penchant for storytelling pumped up with a beautiful sense for movement by making an angled takeoff from his Haus Party trilogy. The songs shift away from obvious bass drops, heavy drums, and kicks towards airier keyboard synths, digital bloops, and the occasional electric guitar. I'm not saying you can't dance to any of this, but maybe you won't feel inspired to do a death drop or front split. I felt inspired to roll myself into some leggings and work myself up to shimmies and finger snaps.

Given the doozy of multiple ongoing pandemics and worldwide whack politics, it is a relief to have hot summer dance jams show up, with one or two lovely ballads interspersed to provide a dance experience that also has a little time for a listener to catch his/her/their breath. In addition, tribute numbers show direct appreciation for sexual and lyrical icons of the '80s. In particular. "PRE MADONNA" and "CALL YOU" hint at the '80s images and sounds of both Madonna and Prince, respectively, in a way that isn't mocking or coy. No one can accuse Hall of making statements only halfway. Controversial and fun, "SORRY BARBIE" is a gay man's anthem, and while I may not agree that every man needs a man (or several good men, of course), I can't be mad at it since it's so inventive and has some of my favorite one-liners this year.

If the siren call of man love is not for you, but Pride is, you will enjoy "GAY EXCELLENCE," which is slow enough to allow for those of us who get winded walking up stairs, and fast enough to appeal to everyone who needs to chant, clap, and strut. My personal favorite is "HIGHER," which does movies like "Fame" and "Flashdance" sonic justice by providing frenetic and explosive energy worthy of wristbands, leg warmers, and leotards. I am most impressed by the inclusion of both "TOMORROW" mixes, and while I love the slow ballad, the banging dance remix also proves that production matters. While the lyrics and general themes of the song remain the same, different vocal phrasing and speed transforms it into a dance while you're crying.

"ALGORYTHM" drops on June 1st.

Noe Kamelamela is a reader who reads everything and a writer who writes very little.