Olivia Rodrigo’s latest release “GUTS” lives up to the hype of her first album

Photo Courtesy of Interscope Records

Olivia Rodrigo’s sophomore album is something comparable to Lamar Jackson’s sophomore season where he passed for 3,000 yards, ran for 1,000 yards and also won the NFL’s MVP award.

The Grammy award-winning artist released her newest album, “GUTS”on Sept. 8, which has beautifully followed up her 2021 debut album, “SOUR”. “GUTS”  leans into punk rock, similar to Avril Lavigne, while also containing softer ballads with more vulnerable lyrics.

Rodrigo stays true to the vulnerability and relatability in her lyrics, which is what made her first release, “SOUR”, so popular with listeners.  

The album talks about insecurities, relationship troubles and growing up. Which are things most teens and young adults can relate to, making Rodrigo’s album a great listen, especially for the younger generation.

“GUTS” consists of 11 songs, nearly 40 minutes of Rodrigo’s relatable angst and complex emotions.

“pretty isn’t pretty” is one of the most powerful songs on the album. The song talks about the unrealistic expectations the media has set for young women and the negative effects it can have on mental health. 

Rodrigo sings,“‘Cause there’s always somethin’ missin’ / There’s always somethin’ in the mirror that I think looks wrong”. It’s lyrics like these that make Rodrigo so loved amongst her fanbase, her willingness to get deep and personal in her lyrics only makes her more relatable. 

Rodrigo continues sharing vulnerable lyrics with her song, “lacy”.

The song shows how jealousy and obsession can go hand in hand. Lacy is used to represent someone who Rodrigo is jealous of, and she compares herself until we come to a point where it seems like she is almost romanticizing Lacy. Even though she is jealous of the girl in the song, she seems obsessed with her and wants to be exactly like her.

The outro of the song goes; “And I despise my jealous eyes and how hard they fell for you / Yeah, I despise my rotten mind and how much it worships you.”

It’s songs like “lacy” and “pretty isn’t pretty” that make Olivia Rodrigo as great as she is. These songs show us the authentic and vulnerable side to Rodrigo that people often forget, because they often think of her more popular, punk rock songs like “good 4 u” and “bad idea right?” which listeners typically hear more of on the radio.. 

Rodrigo transitions to her well-loved usage of punk rock in this album with songs like “all-american b**ch”, “bad idea right?” and  “love is embarrassing”.

The song “get him back!” is an example of Rodrigo’s vulnerable and emotionally charged lyrics.

Rodrigo uses the phrase “get him back” in two different ways. The first one represents her desire to rekindle their relationship simply for revenge, and the second use is her wanting to get back together with her ex, because she misses him. 

The chorus goes; “I wanna make him really jealous, wanna make him feel bad / Oh, I wanna get him back / ‘Cause then again, I really miss him and it makes me real sad.”

Rodrigo accurately illustrates the emotional roller coaster that is dealing with the end of a toxic relationship, depicting the feeling of hatred and wanting to get your revenge as well as the feeling of missing someone. 

The theme of growing up and dealing with fame is something that Rodrigo touches on only a few times in“GUTS”.It’s especially emphasized in her song, “making the bed”. 

Rodrigo writes about pushing away good friends, losing control of her life and feeling like she acts older than she is. The song is refreshing as it feels like a song Rodrigo wrote for herself. 

“making the bed” allows listeners to hear the struggles that Rodrigo has dealt with since dropping her debut album “SOUR”,  dealing with the fame at seventeen years old as well as growing up. 

Rodrigo sings; “Another day pretendin’ I’m older than I am / Another perfect moment that doesn’t feel like mine / Another thing I forced to be a sign.” 

“GUTS” is an album that lived up to the hype of its predecessor and shows the growth of Olivia Rodrigo not only as an artist, but as a person as well. This album has further cemented her as the Gen-Z rockstar.

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