Butterfly’s debut single Honey is a bit of a departure from the tone of the album – one that signifies a new journey for Mariah Carey into her musical career, revealing much of the softer side of her heart that has rarely been exposed in her previous music. But as Mariah Carey said in an interview, “my trend in my own first single thing” that started with Dreamlover, her preference for hip-pop is evident.
In the rest of the tracks, Mariah lets loose her inner joy, sadness, sensuality, vulnerability, rebellion, and strength.
Track 2 Butterfly and Track 10 Fly Away(Butterfly Reprise) are the main theme of the album – Spread wings and prepare to fly. After years of living under surveillance with her ex-husband, this track suggests that her life is often controlled, and after years of holding back, she finally breaks out and becomes a butterfly. In addition, her vocal control and orchestration grow more sophisticated, with a gentle, emotional progression from the beginning to the high belting and whistling (in some of the previous tracks, the whistling was sometimes inappropriate).
Mariah Carey creates a strong sense of atmosphere in The roof – a rainy night, dark yellow lighting, and a woman in love reminiscing about their love on the roof. Fourth of July has a similar, but more dreamy and lighter feel to it. In this album, she digs more into her inner turmoil and cover-ups, showing the listener a more realistic side – she is just a girl who wants to be loved. There is no doubt that Mariah Carey has reached the top of her vocal performance, and with this album, she is finally able to let go of her past inhibitions and shackles to create her more sensual artistic persona. Although more than half of the songs on the album show attachment to a lover, the different treatments are able to do so without being sweet or abstract, which has been largely successful. Close my eyes and Outside are two voices that pour out their insecurities, and this infectious expression easily resonates with listeners who have similar experiences.
As time slowly passes, Butterfly is an album that I can relate to more than others and gain strength from the melancholy, which is undoubtedly her most successful album.
EPs are good, too.