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Star-Crossed (stylized in all lowercase) is the fifth studio album by American singer Kacey Musgraves. It was released on September 10, 2021, by MCA Nashville and Interscope Records. Musgraves co-wrote and co-produced the album with American musicians Ian Fitchuk and Daniel Tashian, with whom she collaborated on her fourth studio album, Golden Hour (2018), as well.

The album’s subject matter was inspired by Musgraves’ personal journey of heartache and healing following her divorce from American singer-songwriter Ruston Kelly. She described Star-Crossed as chronicling a “modern tragedy”, taking influences from Romeo and Juliet, the famous play by English playwright William Shakespeare, and cited Bill Withers, Daft Punk, Sade, Eagles, and Weezer as her musical references for the album. Sonically, Star-Crossed is a pop record incorporating folk, dance, rock, and psychedelic elements, while retaining the country sensibility of its predecessor. It consists of mellow ballads, propelled by steady tempos, analog synthesizers, looped drums, and layered harmonies.

The album was preceded by three singles: the lead single and title track “Star-Crossed” on August 23, 2021, followed by “Justified” four days later, and “Simple Times” on September 9, 2021. An accompanying film titled after the album and featuring its music, directed by Bardia Zeinali, was exclusively released to Paramount+ alongside the album’s release. Star-Crossed received generally favorable reviews from music critics, who regarded it the “divorce album” of Musgraves’ discography, in contrast to the celebration of marriage in Golden Hour. Most of the reviews of Star-Crossed complimented its genre-blending production and Musgraves’ intimate storytelling, while the rest felt it is an inferior work to Golden Hour.

Tracklist:

1.Star-Crossed

2.Good Wife

3.Cherry Blossom

4.Simple Times

5.If This Was a Movie..

6.Justified

7.Angel

8.Breadwinner

9.Camera Roll

10.Easier Said

11.Hookup Scene

12.Keep Lookin’ up

13.What Doesn’t Kill Me

14.There Is a Light

15.Gracias a la Vida (Violeta Parra)

OVERALL RATING: 4½ stars