It’s here! Julia Michaels’ long-awaited debut album Not In Chronological Order is here! We cannot explain to you how excited we’ve been to finally get our hands on this album. And the second we did, we ran to our rooms, locked the door, and fully submerged ourselves in the talent of one of the best songwriters of the generation. Not In Chronological Order is a damn masterpiece. Stream it right now!
GRAMMY award-nominated Julia Michaels first gave us a taste of what was to come from this album, when she released ‘Lie Like This’ back in 2020, ‘All Your Exes’ in March, and the newest single ‘Love Is Weird’ just two weeks ago! We absolutely love those tracks, and now, seeing them fit into this storyboard of an album, makes them even more special. Not In Chronological Order explores love, life, and heartbreak, but not necessarily in that order, as Julia explains:
When I was looking at the tracklisting, it literally was not in chronological order of the events that it took place in my life. The way that I saw the tracklisting in my head, a lot of the heartbreak came in the middle, and finding new love came at the end. That’s the arc of this album: I’m not bitter about love anymore. I know what functional love is like and being in love and being hesitant about that love because it feels so perfect.Julia Michaels
Lyrical Brain Power!
We broke down (figuratively and literally) the lyrical genius of Not In Chronological Order because we’re just nice like that! No, seriously though, Julia’s ability to portray such honest and transparent experiences through her lyrics, is one of our favorite things about her approach to songwriting. It’s the one-liners that stay with us through this project. Julia’s ability to hit us right in the feels, in just a few short words, is one of the biggest flexes we’ve witnessed. Not In Chronological Order is so dynamically written, from the first word on the opening track ‘All Your Exes’ to the last word on the album in ‘That’s The Kind Of Woman.’ So, join us, as we deep dive into the lyrics that have quickly cemented this album as utterly exceptional.
“I want to live in a world where all your exes are dead”
Erm, mood. This might be an obvious choice for the best lyric from ‘All Your Exes,’ but come on, we’d be doing Julia a disservice if we didn’t simp over it. It’s so assertively honest. It’s the line so many of us have thought before but never dared say, but Julia says it with her whole chest! The lyric is beautifully sad, in a dark and very real way that makes us stand to attention.
“Love is strange for some/ It ranges from making love to tears”
The full spectrum of human emotion when it comes to love is laid bare by Julia in ‘Love Is Weird.’ The darkness and light of giving your heart to someone are delivered so poetically in this second track. Most of us have ridden this familiar roller coaster before, with the highs and lows of love. We adore how Julia has owned this reality in the track. It would have been so easy for Julia to give us a lovey-dovey, metaphorical chorus and title for this track, but in true Julia style, she went with the casually unapologetic ‘Love Is Weird.’ There’s no beating around the bush here, love really is just plain weird sometimes!
“I’ll stop checking horoscopes to cope with all my misery”
Damn Julia, you didn’t have to call us out like that! Did she write this about us? Throughout ‘Pessimist,’ Julia looks back on the person she was and the person she has become through this relationship. How her significant other has come along and pulled her into positivity, instead of often sadness and bitterness. We’re not the only ones that have sat reading horoscopes to justify and feed into our misery (that’s us, classic Virgo!).
“The summer before you/ I thought love was Shakespearean”
This lyric is so thought-provoking. On the surface, the meaning of ‘Little Did I Know’ may not be obvious, but that’s the beauty of music, it can be interpreted by listeners. What we are getting here is how love, like Shakespeare, can often feel like it is meant for someone else. You know it exists, but it feels unobtainable in your life. Our hot take here is that Julia has perceived true love in the past as something beyond her remit and out of her reach. And then someone came along and made it accessible. Someone made Shakespeare come alive in her life. Someone made love a possibility. Excuse us, but that is just art. Plain and simple.
“I drove to our love so fast, I racked up speeding tickets”
In ‘Orange Magic,’ we follow Julia in what feels like the ending of a relationship that may have been rushed into. This track seems like such a self-reflection of what Julia has learned from this past love. But it’s also not a sad song, it’s strangely uplifting to us, possibly thanks to the airy vibes of the track. We’re so curious about the meaning behind ‘Orange Magic.’ Why is it orange? Julia, please tell us!
“I’m spilling over, trying not to unfold”
Throughout ‘Lie Like This,’ Julia seems to be singing directly to a lover. Is it a tale of questions and uncertainties melting away through intimacy that is too hard to resist? Or is it an actual metaphor for the physicality of lying down with a lover, and trying not to unfold? Or maybe it’s about love and romance, and we should get our heads out of the gutter? Who knows? We absolutely love lyrics with so many interpretations. It allows listeners to take what they need from the song and shows the songwriting talent of Julia Michaels.
“Bet she can’t tie a cherry stem with her tongue”
Hello, Julia has entered the chat, to remind you what you’re missing in ‘Wrapped Around.’ This is an anthem tune of “look at me now” and claiming back her breakup confidence, and we are obsessed with it. This track feels like our jealous, petty breakup stage, and we’re living for it! Julia is reminding her ex, they’re not gonna find better. And we’re very certain we agree with Julia! Now, excuse us, we’re off to buy some cherries!
“At what age did you have s*x?/Did you have a teenage phase with cigarettes?”
Okay, just putting it out there to be transparent, this is one of our absolute favorite tracks on Not In Chronological Order. We think it’s safe to say we’ve moved into the new love era. Through ‘History’ we follow Julia getting to know a new partner and sharing in each other’s histories, which feels so intimate and personal. The lyrics show us how Julia is seeking to find out this person’s history before making new history together. And that’s just so stinking cute, yet utterly realistic. We wish we’d been that nosey with our partners! Maybe we would have learned that they eat biscuits in bed before committing!
“Every time I find somebody new/ I hope that the memory of you will leave me alone”
Again, this may sound like a sad song, but it doesn’t feel sad. It feels like growth and moving on, but with some fears. ‘Undertone’ is such a relatable and humanizing song, of remnants of a past love bleeding into new relationships. It’s a plea to be able to move on. For the ghost of relationships past, to move on and leave the new relationship alone. This track is sublime and honest, with the vocal style that only Julia Michaels can deliver.
“If the me I am, walked out that door/ That’s the kinda woman I’d leave me for”
Stunning. Simply stunning. The final track, ‘That’s The Kind Of Woman,’ left us with goosebumps on our faces. It’s the shortest track on Not In Chronological Order, at two minutes 14 seconds, and we could have had it three times longer! This final track is so painfully deep and honest. It seems to be Julia holding up a mirror to her insecurities, while simultaneously building up other women. This track feels like reading Julia’s diary, and it is lyrically, sonically, and melodically stunning. This is our official vote for ‘That’s The Kind Of Woman’ to be the next single, please. We absolutely love it. Plus, keep an ear out for an Easter Egg from another song!
And that’s it! We’ve been on the journey of Not In Chronological Order together! Is everyone okay? That was emotional, and we adored every second. This album is a masterpiece and a masterclass in songwriting and musical ability. Through all of Julia Michaels‘ past music, we knew this would be an amazing project, but bloody hell, that was phenomenal! It’s now on every playlist we have and will be staying there for a long time! A very big round of applause from The Honey POP family to the incredibly special Julia Michaels!
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