REVIEW: Olivia Rodrigo’s SOUR is a sweet debut

REVIEW: Olivia Rodrigo’s SOUR is a sweet debut

Since her debut single “driver’s license” was released in January, Olivia Rodrigo has taken the world by storm. Her first album, SOUR, came out in May and quickly topped the charts, earning her appearances at awards shows and Saturday Night Live mere months into her music career. If you aren’t familiar with Olivia Rodrigo, she is the latest in the long series of Disney Channel stars turned pop artists, following in the footsteps of singers such as Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez, the Jonas Brothers and Demi Lovato. Rodrigo currently stars in Disney’s High School Musical: The Musical The Series (bet you can’t say that three times fast), a series spinoff of the popular High School Musical movie franchise. Rodrigo’s album SOUR pays tribute to her musical inspirations through the 11 tracks which focus on lyrical themes of heartbreak and the coming of age of the artist and her peers. While SOUR is an impressive debut album, it does leave Rodrigo plenty of room to grow and improve in the future. What really holds SOUR back is that it isn’t sure what to be. Many of the songs are pure pop songs and ballads, but there are a couple of songs that lean into an early 2000s’ pop-punk sound. While variety can be a good thing, there isn’t really a smooth transition between the different sounds and there isn’t an even balance between the two types of songs (mostly pop with 2 rock songs). The rock-leaning songs are great, but they feel a little bit out of place here. But SOUR’s biggest issue isn’t its genre confusion, it’s how on-the-nose...
Letter from the (new) editor: Here’s to change!

Letter from the (new) editor: Here’s to change!

Hello Lipscomb! Happy summer! The past school year has been turbulent, to say the least. A global pandemic, social justice movements and a divisive presidential election left Lipscomb’s campus (and the world) entirely different compared to just a year ago. I want to introduce myself to the Lipscomb community in the hope of establishing trust in student media as well as encouraging engagement on our content and reporting. I’ve been involved with Lumination for nearly three years, in that time I’ve worked with incredible student journalists on the stories that have defined our campus community. I’ve witnessed first-hand the power in student protest, the vibrant energy of a Lipscomb Athletics game, and innovation in the face of difficult seasons. During this time, I’ve also been lucky enough to be involved in the staff of two of Lumination’s impactful editors. Mckenzi Harris and Erin Franklin are pillars of leadership, the groundwork they laid provides me with the resources to best represent the good in student journalism. A return to normalcy is on everyone’s mind right now. Yet at Lipscomb, that “new normal” will consist of a new presidential administration, a new student life vice president and COVID’s overall impact on how the university functions. In the coming school year, Lumination will seek to amplify community voices and stories amid these coming changes. We also hope to report on the excitement of returning concerts, festivals and movies. I encourage every student, faculty member, staff member, alumnus and even parent to check out the excellent work of our staff. Speaking of, I would love to introduce our returning and new leadership. Hannah...
Letter from the (old) editor: farewell, Lumination

Letter from the (old) editor: farewell, Lumination

Mckenzi Harris already has transitioned from her job as editor of Lipscomb’s Lumination Network student news website to the “real world.” But before she graduated, May 8, she offered up some final thoughts on being a student, photographer, editor and news-gatherer for the website. Here are her thoughts:   It’s here. My last day as an undergraduate college student. I’m officially an alumna from Lipscomb University as of May 8, which means I’ve passed the Lumination “editor-in-chief” title on to a new leader. I began my staff duties with Lumination as a sports photographer the spring of 2019, and I began to occasionally write a piece for two. I took on the “editor-in-chief” role in the summer of 2019. I have enjoyed every minute of my time at Lipscomb, but my best memories came from being a part of the amazing community of Lumination staff writers. As I leave Lipscomb to enter the workforce, our Lumination leadership roles are being turned over to a great, new team of editors. Starting tomorrow (May 9), rising senior Kathryn Farris will be taking over as the new editor-in-chief; rising sophomores Camryn Given and Hannah Cron will build on their duties as managing editors; and rising junior Danny Kotula is becoming the sports editor. Lumination Network is being left in the best possible hands with this new editorial staff. I have so many amazing memories from my time as Lumination Network’s editor-in-chief and want to share a few, as well as some gratitude I want to publicly express to the communication faculty and Lipscomb community members who have entrusted me to bring the news to our audience over the past two...
Riley Hoag reflects on her time in Lipscomb’s IDEAL program

Riley Hoag reflects on her time in Lipscomb’s IDEAL program

During my time at Lipscomb, I was a student in the IDEAL Program. When I began my first year moving into the dorms, I didn’t know anyone who was a student or who was in the program. I was excited about finally being able to get a real college experience and making new friends after moving from another state. My experience during Quest Week didn’t exactly go as I wanted it to be. It was hard being able to make friends with the freshmen who were already younger than I was. When I started classes I was able to meet new people and get to know them. One day in class we were talking about photography and after the class one of my classmates took me to meet the Lumination editor-in-chief. I had expressed interest in taking pictures for Lumination Network. I started getting assigned sporting events to take photos for. I had started making a few friends and then IDEAL assigned peer mentors for the IDEAL students. Two of my mentors happened to be on the women’s soccer team and I had no clue until one night I was taking photos for one of their games.                     Riley with Lumination Network editor-in-chief Mckenzi Harris                     Riley with her IDEAL peer mentors from the Lady Bisons soccer team   I started becoming good friends with my mentors, players on sports teams, and students in my classes. Most of my favorite memories are with my friends on the soccer team because we...
REVIEW: Justin Bieber explores faith in ‘boundary pushing’ new album

REVIEW: Justin Bieber explores faith in ‘boundary pushing’ new album

The formerly pre-pubescent boy known for crooning in his falsetto and making 14-year-old girls swoon, proves in his new album Justice that growing up in the spotlight is not always as glamorous as it seems. Justin Bieber shares as much in his hit “Lonely” that detailed the dark place he inhabited as a result of his young fame. However, the so-called “Beliebers” — fans who have been with him throughout his entire career — have recently seen him become a believer himself: In God and true love. Faith and marriage have become his new brand and are reflected in his newest album, titled Justice, with song lyrics that suggest remorse for his actions and thankfulness for forgiveness. Throughout his new music, he credits his wife, formerly Hailey Baldwin, and God for giving him a new perspective and second chance. His once booming music career seems to be revived amid these dramatic life changes. Though, along with success he has also met more controversy. Some have criticized his “inauthentic” references to social injustice within his album. “Rolling Stone” even referred to his use of Martin Luther King Jr., speech samples on his album as “a jarring musical misstep”. In response to these criticisms Bieber responded: “I’m not trying to make a connection between me and Martin Luther King. That’s why I never try to talk about social injustice, or I didn’t want to be the one to talk about it. “I just have so much more learning to do. But I have this man who was ready to die, and what he believed to be true. If I’m not willing...
Holiday Entertainment- commuting home edition

Holiday Entertainment- commuting home edition

While Covid is on the rise and traveling is discouraged, the campus is closed and that means most students have to commute home.  Whether you are driving to visit family or flying back home, a good holiday commute should be filled with music, podcasts and movies.  I grew up in a Christmas fanatic family. We are most easily comparable to the Griswolds and there is no denying it. Our yard stays filled with lights till the end of January and the Christmas season begins before thanksgiving — sometimes even before Halloween.  All that said, I would consider myself somewhat of an expert in holiday music and movies.  We can start with music. Here are my top favorite songs for the Christmas season this year. Ribbons and Bows — Kacey Musgraves Not Christmas till you come Home — by Norah Jones White Christmas — George Ezra It’s been a year — Stephen Day You’re a mean one Mr. Grinch — Tyler the Creator Merry Christmas Darling — The Carpenters Santa Claus is coming to town — The Jackson 5 Step into Christmas — Elton John Another Wonderful Christmas — Joey and Rory Up on the Housetop — Pentatonix Check back for some of my top favorite Holiday Movies! Have a happy holidays! xoxo,...