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The Lion's Tale

The student news site of Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School

The Lion's Tale

The student news site of Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School

The Lion's Tale

Lt. Col. Avi Levi presents on the Israel Air Defense System.
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Joe Vogel speaking out to the community. Photo from
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Adam Salomon, Reporter • May 22, 2024

While, door-to-door campaigning, Junior Rafi Seigel knocks on the door of a family household in Maryland’s sixth district, asking them to vote...

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Tyler Portnoy, Reporter • May 19, 2024

Crack. The bat hits the ball and sophomore Carrine Shemesh sprints towards first base as sophomore Eliana Wolf crosses the plate, scoring the...

The baseball team has two managers who can be found at the majority of the baseball teams games, Jordan Levy (‘24) and junior Josh Berl.
All bases covered: managers support the baseball team
Vivi Ducker, Features Editor • May 17, 2024

When in attendance at any of the CESJDS varsity baseball team’s games this year, next to the players on the bench, the baseball team managers....

Conan Gray’s latest album disappoints


Like many other Conan Gray fans, I stayed up until 12:00 a.m. on April 5 to hear Gray’s third album, “Found Heaven,” for the first time. However, the exhaustion I felt at school that day was not worth the experience, as the album was incredibly disappointing and did not live up to the standards he has set with his discography. 

I must preface this article by saying that Conan Gray is my favorite artist, and his last album, “Superache,” is my favorite album of all time. However, even though my standards might be a little high, I cannot deny that my intense excitement leading up to the album’s release was all for nothing, as the album was a complete disappointment. 

Gray is known for his angelic vocals, indie style and great melodies, something that was lost in this album. With “Found Heaven,” Gray attempted to experiment and stray from his traditional, ballad style, but his incorporation of elements from 1980s music was far from successful. There’s a reason everyone trashes 80s music, and Gray should have left it in the 20th century. 

Gray’s attempt at replicating the style of 80s music was a huge mistake, as it took away from his talented vocals. In order to copy 80s music, Gray sang in a low, robot-like register in many of his songs, which did not sound good regardless of when it was used. For example, in his song “Lonely Dancers,” the low register he uses in the chorus makes his music sound like it belongs in a science fiction show, not the discography of an indie singer. 

Many of Gray’s songs on the album also used a synthesizer as its main instrument, which I did not appreciate. It’s not a coincidence that synthesizers are rarely used anymore, as they encapsulate everything that is wrong and trashy about 80s music. The synth did nothing for Gray’s music and added to the cheesiness of the album. 

It is important to highlight the positive aspects of the album, though. One of my favorite things about Gray is his hard-hitting bridges, and he did deliver a few through his songs “Alley Rose” and “Forever With Me.” Both songs contained bridges with a lot of build-up, which made them reminiscent of songs from Gray’s previous album. I also enjoyed his song “Winner,” which was released as a single prior to the album’s release. 

Additionally, although I did not enjoy the 80s aspects of Gray’s album, I do have to praise him for being consistent with the theme. Almost all songs encapsulated the style of 80s music, and it is impressive that he was able to come up with 13 unique songs that all gave 80s vibes. 

Overall, though I do remain a die-hard Conan Gray fan, this album was not for me. My overall message for Conan Gray is this: you are perfect just the way you are, and there is no need to change things up. 

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About the Contributor
Lily Rulnick
Lily Rulnick, Editor-in-Chief
Lily Rulnick is thrilled to serve as Editor-in-Chief on the Lion’s Tale after being on the paper since freshman year. Lily has so much faith in the incredible staff and cannot wait to work with them to make the Lion’s Tale shine. Apart from the Lion’s Tale, Lily is president of the Ceramics Club, the student representative on the Health and Wellness Taskforce, captain of the Girls Varsity Tennis Team, and a Student Admissions Representative. For fun, Lily loves to play piano, read fashion magazines, ski, and spend time with her friends, family, and two dogs. Lily cannot wait to continue to put all she has into the Lion’s Tale and make it the best it can be. 

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