Our reigning queen, Alaska is a master at anything she turns her hand to and music is no different as she slays on her debut album, Anus.
Many of the Drag Race alum have turned to churning out songs in favour of a quick buck, but Alaska presents a genius combination of comedy and talent that she has demonstrated throughout her career in this album. It is by drag, for drag, encompassing all the best of the lifestyle in one concise record.
Kicking off the album with our queens epitomes phrase that she made famous throughout her time on television, this song works as an introduction to drag, Alaska, and this album. Through the spoken word track she works in many popular phrases, and quotes used in the drag world culminating in an almighty greeting that kicks off the album on a strong point.
The title track, ‘Anus’ moves into hip-hop/trap territory as we explore Alaska’s unusual mode of thought through explicit language, and interesting sonics. Upon repeat listening of the song, the vulgar language loses its regular meaning and mindlessly becomes a part of the song.
After the harsh magnitude of ‘Anus’, Alaska mixes it up with the sweet pop ballad ‘Pussy’. Though it has yet another x-rated title, it is a breezy, romantic song detailing love, acceptance, and inner beauty. Breaking it down this tune is a flitty way of embracing trans people in the dating world.
Deconstructing gender roles in a hilarious manner, Alaska pokes fun at the patriarchy hinging their power on male facial hair. Always inclusive she opens up the ‘Beard’ to be worn by men or women as a symbol of power. While this may not sound like a usual pop track, the song has a strong production that makes it a dance floor necessity.
This Is My Hair
This song that most synonymously describes her artistry, humour, and sound; ‘This Is My Hair’ has a sickening beat, witty lyrics, and again a fundamental message on not making assumptions on people’s appearance. There’s no way you can listen to this one without dancing.
First of all, we live for the Broadway intro on the album, it’s beautifully sung, haunting, and completely out there. For the track itself, it is a natural successor to the previous track. As she aggressively sings commands over a hypnotic beat, you can help but sing along to the catchy tune. The metaphors used here are questionable, but some of her most bizarrely interesting.
Gimme All Your Money
Any song that features a rap verse from Laganja Estranja has me hooked instantly. This track is a cool switch up, with a trap beat with an intriguing infix of soft chimes. The back and forth between Laganja and Alaska is perhaps the best part of the song as the chorus becomes overly-repetitive and the verses come across as uninspiring.
This song feels a little disjointed from the rest of the album. Her most mainstream track, this sounds like a forgettable pop hit. The chorus is fun and a total ear worm, but the verses are dull and forgettable. While it is an uplifting message, and not too bad you have to skip, it just is not a stand out track. Perfectly harmless, but lacking spark.
Best Night Ever
Alaska puts her vocals to work on this cut, sounding like an array of different people she provides a textured sound to the track alternating the tone, and bass of her voice. Again, a carefree, kooky song but not one you will remember moments after listening.
The Shade Of It All
The piano ballad of the album, it toes the line perfectly between emotion and comedy. Willam and Courtney sounds ethereal in their backing vocals, while inflicting their own senses of humour with Alaska’s that make the AAA Girls so special. Reflecting on a past relationship, the message is actually pretty uplifting and self-empowering.
In drag, ‘Legendary’ is the highest honour any queen can achieve. Alaska contemplates her own untimely demise in terms of those such as Amy Winehouse, Aliyah, and Kurt Cobain, stating that she would be okay with this as she would too become a legend. It’s a dark topic, but the beat makes it feel positive and upbeat with hopeful lyrics.
Perhaps as deep and introspective as Alaska gets, this alternative-rock addition gives our queen an emo slant that feels more generic to her personality off stage. The lyrics are emotionally-charged, and devoid of the comedy that accompanied her previous numbers. A complete U-turn from the rest of the album it is the least fitting amongst her chaotic track list, but a good listen nonetheless.
Your Make Up Is Terrible
Her ‘Bad Romance’, her ‘Toxic’, her ‘Single Ladies’, this is Alaska’s crowning moment on the album. A perfect blend of spoken-word, and thumping EDM beats, this is what crowds expect of Alaska when they see her onstage. Her sharply written lyrics, and uncontrollable rhythm, mixed with the interactive nature when performed live makes this Alaska’s signature track. We’ll never tire of screaming along.
Our Verdict Is: Alaska is a one-of-a-kind, and this album follows suit in the most fitting way possible. No other queen could have performed these songs justice, and Alaska wouldn’t have sounded right singing anything other than the funky pop music trapped in her mind. She expertly manoeuvres between serious, and frivolous topics through drag culture lens. While it may be silly fun, it is a whole lotta fun – which we love.