The ‘brutal’ truth: Olivia Rodrigo is overrated

By Bella Whitmore | Intern

Following Olivia Rodrigo’s newly released sophomore album “Guts,” I thought it would be fitting to go into a few of the reasons why her music, on occasion, misses the mark.

Take this with a grain of salt, because overrated does not equate to bad. Just like every other girl, I love to jam out to her music and scream “vampire” in the car. However, when I dig a little deeper into her actual songwriting, I begin to take issue.

While there is no doubt about her catchy melodies or her talented vocals, the problem with her music lies within the lyrics and subject matter itself — or lack thereof, I should say. There is a serious lack of originality when it comes to the themes and inspiration behind her music.

Try not to write a breakup song challenge! Impossible.

The entirety of her freshman album “SOUR” is written in a negative light. Every single song is about either a breakup or not feeling good enough in her own skin. From “jealousy, jealousy” to “favorite crime,” the themes of insecurity, anger and heartbreak are beaten to death. When sad and angsty songs are all you write, your audience begins to question the validity of your songwriting abilities.

I mean, would it kill this girl to write a love song?

“GUTS” is plagued with the same issues. Although there is clear maturity between her first and second albums, I was hoping for a little more versatility from Rodrigo going into her second record. Songs like “the grudge” and “love is embarrassing” are clearly just extensions of songs from her first album and offer us absolutely nothing new — not to mention that Rodrigo seems to copy other famous songs from other musical artists. “lacy” is just a reworked “Heather” by Conan Gray, and “teenage dream” undoubtedly draws from Taylor Swift’s “Nothing New.”

“GUTS” is by no means pioneering the songwriting industry.

*This critique excludes “all-american b*tch.” That one was pretty fun.

There is no doubt Rodrigo has found her niche and knows how to cater well to her audience, but one important aspect of being a great songwriter is versatility, and she has not seemed to master that yet. Rodrigo has a lot of untapped potential. Her melodies are super fun, and her voice is stunning, but we simply do not need anymore angsty, heartbroken girl anthems from Rodrigo. Let’s all hope her songs get a little “happier” when her third album comes out.