Olivia Rodrigo dropped her debut album SOUR yesterday. If you haven’t heard of her, where have you been? (You know, besides in completely different parts of the Internet as me, as evidenced by my husband who has no idea what I’m talking about most of the time. The Internet is weird.) Regardless, I’ve very kindly embedded the album below for you, so you can give it a listen while you read this review!
I’m 25, which depending on how you look at it, could technically be considered Gen Z. But let me tell you, I am not. I am full millennial, and I can prove it by how much I identify with the commentary surrounding this album.
“Deja vu” was my favorite single from the album, but having listened to the whole thing, there are a few that stand out. (Side note, what’s with all these albums coming out in all lowercase? Where is that coming from??)
What an intro to an album as angsty as this one is! It’s amazing. The punk influence is on point; it immediately gave me Avril Lavigne vibes, and though Avril Lavigne was slightly before my time, I 100% support this throwback.
Rodrigo cited Taylor Swift as one of her influences on this album, and with “Happier” it’s easy to see why. The lyrics are sharp. Rodrigo has a way of getting right to the point before you’ve even noticed, and once you notice it hurts.
This one hurt to listen to because it perfectly described who I was in high school, in the worst way possible. I was more insecure then than I’ve ever been in my life. “Com-comparison is killin’ me slowly /…/ I wanna be you so bad, and I don’t even know you / All I see is what I should be / Happier, prettier, jealousy, jealousy.” I mean, ouch. It kind of hurts to remember how much I wished I was different in high school, but it’s also validating to feel seen.
“hope ur ok”
This was for sure the least angsty song on the album, and honestly, it doesn’t really fit with the rest. But I’m glad she included it. We all have people we’ve lost touch with.
All three of the singles from this album (“driver’s license,” “deja vu,” “good4 u”) were breakup songs. I was hoping for a better mix of subject matter with this album, and we didn’t quite get that. Only three songs are not about breakups (“brutal,” “jealousy, jealousy,” “hope ur ok”). However, I still genuinely love this album. It’s completely on-brand for an artist who is only 18 years old, and I love how much it hearkens back to teenage-dom. The overall sound is fantastic, too – Rodrigo has punk, pop, and even folky vibes in here and it all meshes together quite well.
What did you think of SOUR?
Album cover image from Wikipedia.