Whenever Kesha releases an album, it’s much more than an album – it’s a moment of catharsis and a big hug in musical form! And Animals, we won’t have to wait much longer for another one of those times because Kesha is officially coming back with her Gag Order album on May 19th. A gag order is when a judge tells someone they can’t publicly speak about a court case, and we love that she’s reclaiming that idea for what we’re guessing will be a triumphant return to her eccentric alt-pop glory – she said in a Rolling Stone interview that it’s not so much a literal gag order, but a feeling that she can’t speak out about her court cases because of how much criticism and skepticism might pop up.
From what we know so far, Gag Order is looking like it might be Kesha’s most raw, vulnerable albums to date, and we cannot wait to see what she has in store for us in this era! With production by Rick Rubin and executive produced by Kesha herself, we know it’s gonna feel like a giant therapy session for us and so many Animals around the world.
I wanted to make an album that sounds the way my head feels. Dipping in and out of depression, gratitude, rage, and hope. Always moving. Without the darkness, there is no light. So I let my darkness have the light. I can’t fight the truth. Life is difficult and painful. It is for everyone.
Kesha in a piece for Nylon
If you’re anything like us at THP, you grew up singing along to songs like ‘TiK ToK’ and ‘Blow’ constantly, but have you dug into the hidden gems of Kesha’s catalog? With over 100 songs to her name between originals, collabs, and tracks written for other artists, we know it can be daunting to dive into some of her deep cuts. So we’re starting you off with some standouts from her previous albums!
Of course, we have to start with Kesha’s latest masterpieces! She’s treating us to not one but two lead singles for Gag Order, and they’re equally amazing. Let’s start with ‘Eat The Acid,’ which she told Nylon that she wrote in the summer of 2020 after feeling a “wave of golden light” wash over her at 3:33 A.M. on a night she couldn’t sleep, inspiring her to dig deeper into who she truly is and how she connects with the world around her. The main idea draws from that spiritual awakening and spins some advice she received from her mom, Pebe, to not take acid because of how it can change your view of the world – meanwhile, Kesha’s experience that night changed her view of the world in a positive way.
Lyrics like “I am the one that I’ve been fighting the whole time, hate has no place in the divine” gave us full-body chills and honestly made us question our entire lives up to this point. Not to mention Kesha’s vocals, which feel so emotive while still giving off a calm, assured energy that matches how she’s become more comfortable in herself. It came up in her Rolling Stone interview that she recorded the vocals on her phone, which gives the song a more intimate feel that makes it all the more special.
Next, we have ‘Fine Line,’ which is a thought-provoking song about all sorts of things Kesha has gone through over the years and how not only those events, but other people’s opinions on them, have affected her. Every lyric made our jaws drop even more than the last, with some of our favorites being “I’m sick of pretending for you” and “this life was never mine.” It feels like she ripped a page out from her diary and decided to share it with us – this era is for Kesha to heal and to help the Animals who want to heal right alongside her.
And did you catch how the “God, some things never should be forgiven” line ties into the “some things only God can forgive” lyric from ‘Praying?’ We really think Gag Order will be like a big sister to Rainbow and we’re in love with it already.
Now, let’s venture back a bit! The Animal track ‘Stephen’ takes us right back to those not-so-good old days of high school when we’d lay on our floor waiting for our crush to answer our text or (gasp) maybe even call us. And we wouldn’t have it any other way. Finding its home among electro-infused pop bangers like ‘TiK ToK’ and ‘Blah Blah Blah,’ ‘Stephen’ offers a more lighthearted moment as Kesha tries to figure out why her new love interest hasn’t called her yet, and the music video even takes that up a notch to show Kesha as Stephen’s stalker, who even makes a mask of his face to put on a mannequin she later takes to karaoke. It’s just as chaotic and intriguing as it sounds!
‘Hunt You Down’
We love us a little bit of Country Kesha! ‘Hunt You Down’ has been one of our favorite songs from her Rainbow album, painting her as a bit of a crazy girlfriend figure while she expresses her passion for a new lover. “I’ve never hurt nobody, never buried a body, never killed no one,” Kesha insists before diving into how this partner would have to watch their back if they broke her heart. It’s so fun hearing her lean into this character and poke fun at how female artists are seen as over-attached or delusional if they speak up about romantic pain in their music.
Sometimes the guy you like is just a monster, and as scary as it can be to admit that, it might still be lighthearted at times. Especially if you hit up the mall food court. ‘Godzilla’ is a playful recount of Kesha falling for someone who’s “mostly tame as long as there’s pizza and video games” but still concerns her mom and sends people running. Honestly, we were robbed of a music video for this one! We would’ve loved to see Kesha wandering around a mall with a giant stuffed dinosaur as people look on, terrified.
We told you earlier, we love Country Kesha! Opening up with a gentle ukulele, ‘Cowboy Blues’ follows Kesha as she wonders whether she’s met the love of her life already and somehow messed it up, subsequently losing them and the potential future they’d have together. Lyrics like “Do you ever lie in bed with your three cats and get obsessed with some boy you met one time three years ago in Nashville, and you can’t remember his last name?” have a grasp on us that’s simply indescribable, and remind us of what an artistic genius Kesha truly is. This one’s for the hopeless romantics whose TikTok FYPs are full of tarot videos!
‘Potato Song (Cuz I Want To)’
One of our favorite things about Kesha is how she’s always unapologetically herself, and that especially comes up on ‘Potato Song’ – because first off, who else would name a song something as fun as ‘Potato Song?’ This track really exposes our whole run-away-and-live-in-a-cottage-and-bake-all-day dream and speaks to our inner child who just wants to do whatever they want. Sometimes all you really need is to ride around on a pony until it’s time to go back inside and eat sweets, and that’s totally valid. ‘Potato Song’ is a reminder that you should focus on whatever makes you happy in life, even if it seems silly!
Not a day goes by when Kesha doesn’t inspire us in some way, shape, or form, and we know Gag Order will be the soundtrack to so much healing and growth. Make sure you pre-order the album right here ahead of its release on May 19th, then let us know which track you’re claiming in the comments below. You can also hit us up on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter – tell us your favorite hidden gems in Kesha’s discography!
Want more of the sweetest music content around while we wait for release day? Right this way!