Seemingly out of nowhere, Olivia Rodrigo released this, her debut in 2021, after her song drivers licence topped charts globally. With an amazing voice and a great sense about her music and image, let’s take a listen to this album and hopefully it will match expectations.

We begin with brutal which has a sad string section in it, before launching into a not so original guitar riff that is a real disappointment actually. It sounds somewhat Punk Rock, but this is bluntly, contemporary and rubbish. The lyrics in particular are really bad. This is not genre busting nor really good, and is fortunately over pretty quickly.

Next is traitor which begins with some great harmonies, as though they have been ripped from Coldplay’s Fix You. Not really original sounding, but a much better sounding piece as Olivia Rodrigo delivers an emotional song that is more her style. A much better listen and actually quite moving, this very much could be one of the most quoted releases of 2021. It’s a breakup song and one should listen to this when sober, it is a good piece of female power regardless. The singing is brilliant here.

drivers license is what got Olivia Rodrigo noticed. It begins with typical car sounds, before launching into a sad song of breakup and disappointment, as is the theme of this album. It’s beautiful and really good sounding, if you are full of sorrow. A rather depressing song for the COVID-19 world, this is a very good song to hear and is very much postmodern blues for those who like the latest trends. Good, although melodramatic, a decent song and puts a lot of other competitors to shame as a single. Good listening experience from start to finish.

1 step forward, 3 steps back comes next and begins with birds chirping and subdued piano. This is another decent song that is quite moving, as is most of the rest of the album. Olivia Rodrigo defines herself as a big new talent of melancholy and melodramatic energy that Coldplay and Radiohead now wished they were. This is an excellent piece of music, and has a lot of effort placed into it. A good and gentle listen, very different from anything else recorded today.

Next is deja vu which begins with a toybox sort of melody, before Olivia Rodrigo gets singing. It is another good song that sounds listenable. Olivia Rodrigo makes very moving music. It goes into a sort of Nine Inch Nails drum loop which sounds a little different for this sort of music. It’s a venomous message to an ex lover, much in the theme of the music of this album. An interesting and honestly decent song, this is a good listen, maybe a little short of being a great one. But still, better than something like Cardi B’s W.A.P. Good song.

Following is good 4 u begins with some bass guitar and a sort of contemporary feel with a crashing Rock sound that goes through this song. A good song, although Olivia Rodrigo is much better served with ballads rather wannabe Rock songs. Hopefully Olivia Rodrigo will see this flaw in her music by the next album. A decent effort, but nice to hear someone these days who isn’t absolutely terrible.

enough for you comes next, and begins with some nice fingerpicked acoustic guitar and sounds actually really good. The ballad side of her music is far better than some of the Rock tracks here. It is a nice piece of music with troubled emotions running through it. A quite good listen that, like much of the album, is deserving a few repeat listens. Very good and laidback, a decent listen all the same. It goes a little quiet in the middle, before resuming with the fingerpicked acoustic guitar. Quite nice to hear. Sad yet a strong musical statement.

happier is a dark sounding piece with really sad emotional appeal and piano to match this piece. It sounds as though Olivia Rodrigo is singing from a really deep, dark and desperate place emotionally. A good effort, although the theme of musical despair and breakups gets a bit much by this point of the album. It is really good music, just it sticks to a theme that is really depressing and quite like a postmodern Joy Division. Good, but really sad listening.

The next song is jealousy, jealousy which begins with a good bass guitar riff, before launching into a woman power sort of message about the “perfect body” image that a lady feels jealous about. A strange song, although this is likely filler. Fortunately this is not one of the out there Rock songs on this album, but it does have a whiff of postmodern mainstream millennial sell-out themes about it. A different piece, but not the greatest song here.

Following is favorite crime which begins with more fingerpicked acoustic guitar and lovely but sad singing from Olivia Rodrigo. This is a very sad song that has a whiff of Roger Waters Pink Floyd about it, in mood sense of course. A very good but depressing listen, this is actually quite good music. Really not uplifting, this is quite dark and disturbing music here. Fortunately, it is quite short.

hope ur ok is the last song here. It begins with some rather rusty guitar parts here, before Olivia Rodrigo begins singing about another set of failed relationships. Once again, this is really nice but super depressing. Yes, this music has Pop appeal but is really not needed to be so off in a mood sense. A good finish to this rather low down album, it has some interesting beats in it as well. Good but really dark, depressing and sad and although this is decent for that sort of mood, it does not really go down well hearing it all the time.

To be fair, this is a really good album. However, it is not an immediately great as the mood of it drags it down, along with some of the ill thought out Rock style tracks. It would be wise to keep an eye on Olivia Rodrigo, all the same. Nice effort Olivia, but to be honest she will make better material in the future, you watch. Not bad for a debut album though.

Sentimental.

7/10