Alternative pop singer songwriter Melanie Martinez had a flying start to her music career with her debut album Cry Baby arriving to a huge amount of success. The album debuted at #1 on the Alternative Albums chart, #5 on the Top Albums chart and #6 on the Billboard 200 album chart – in fact, this week Cry Baby is celebrating its 104th straight week on the Billboard chart, a two-year run without ever slipping off the tally.
The fascinating concept album managed to sell an impressive amount of copies without having any radio hits – Martinez managed this by combining sweet sounding alt-pop, intelligently crafted dark storytelling disguised in a child-like scene and striking audio-visual ideas with her music videos which help to tell her story. Over the last two years, everyone has been so amerced in the story of Cry Baby that it didn’t even come to mind that there could be a second album just looming around the corner. Martinez revealed a few details of what is to come in a recent interview with Billboard, – including how she is currently finished working on the main tracks for the forthcoming album and is now finishing up with the bonus tracks.
Courtesy of Adam Elmakias
In February of this year, Martinez tweeted an update confirming that she was heading back into the studio with boyfriend Michael Keenan as her producer. Keenan previously worked on the tracks ‘Gingerbread Man’ and ‘Play Date’ for 2016’s bonus record Cry Baby’s Extra Clutter.
In many previous interviews, Martinez has explained that she will be expanding the world of her iconic title character for the second album – focusing on the other people around Cry Baby but with Cry Baby still narrating the story. The sound of this album may have also developed since the first album, with Martinez also hinting in previous interviews at some hip-hop influences, use of “vintage squeak toys” as well as an overall darker sound.
Courtesy of Adam Elmakias
With Cry Baby, each track received its own visual element in a music video directed by Martinez herself (with the video for ‘Mad Hatter’ still to be released). This concept will be continued onto the second album with Martinez revealing to Billboard that instead of individual music videos, the album will be released with a full-length movie. The movie will feature all thirteen songs of the album with dialogue in between connecting them all together with Martinez having full control over every element from writing and directing to even styling and makeup. Martinez explained that having the visual element to help tell the story is extremely important to her.
“The film is really a huge priority of mine because it’s really important to me that people can truly understand the sentiment and the story when they hear the record for the first time, and I really want people to be able to follow along properly.” – Melanie Martinez
In the meantime, there is still one song off Cry Baby that hasn’t received its accompanying video yet. Martinez also revealed to Billboard that the long-awaited video for ‘Mad Hatter’ will be CGI animated and will hopefully be released by the end of September. Martinez expressed that the video will be the “finale” for Cry Baby before fully diving into the second album.