Comeback album bores with repetition

graphic by Marissa Arnold

 

Playing it safe, Avril Lavigne broke her six year silence with an album characterized mostly by its dull and repetitive nature.

Avril Lavigne released new album “Head Above Water” Feb. 14, largely inspired by her experience with Lyme disease.

The titular opening song, “Head Above Water,” represents the album’s intentions. It is beautifully written, with powerful orchestral accompaniment and empowering lyrics about overcoming struggle.

Unfortunately, the album goes downhill from there. It is made up mostly of uninspired songs about romance that open well but devolve into being overly similar to others on the album.

“I Fell In Love With The Devil” is a perfect example of this. Its simple yet emotional orchestral opening is quickly abandoned for a boring, repetitive chorus.

Other songs follow this pattern of dull choruses and messages, such as “Goddess,” “Love Me Insane” and “Bigger Wow.”

“Dumb Blonde (feat. Nicki Minaj)” also falls flat, attempting to combine genres but instead feeling forced. Its message, which attempts to be empowering, is contradicted by a dull chorus of “I ain’t no dumb blonde.”

When she sticks to her sound, Lavigne creates more palatable music. The album contains several slow ballads that are exemplary of the genre.

“Crush” is one of these, with excellent construction, accompaniment and vocals. However, it doesn’t stray far from her previous successful songs

The album concludes with “Warrior,” which returns to the theme. While it has a somewhat boring chorus, it has a fair amount of variety, distinguishing it from others on the album.

Generally, “Head Above Water” sticks too close to a musical formula, causing its songs to be too similar to each other.

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