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Avril Lavigne's new album took as many creative risks as the “8” in ‘Sk8er Boi’, with no payoff

This isn't Lavigne's best work. 

Head Above Water took as many creative risks as the “8” in ‘Sk8er Boi’, with no payoff.

Seemingly wanting to shed her grungy pop-princess reputation, Avril Lavigne’s latest album, Head Above Water, attempts to follow in the steps of artists such as Kesha. It’s a comeback album filled with intimate internal battles and more importantly, piano ballads, but lacks the maturity of her predecessors. 

Documenting her long-running struggle with Lyme disease, Head Above Water fails to inspire any type of empathy or relatability. With less than powerful vocal work and clichéd lyrics such as “He clipped her wings when she was born to fly,” Lavigne holds back on telling a raw and honest story.

Lavigne’s fifth track, ‘Dumb Blonde’, shows us a glimpse of her old self; and wow. This chanting-cheerleader-pop-mess cements this album’s place as a fake and immature attempt to create meaningful and brave music as she cries “I ain’t no stupid barbie doll.” In this world of #metoo, female empowerment and complex discussions about women’s issues superseding superficial stereotypes, this track needs to go back to the ‘90s where it belongs. 

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