- 30 Apr 21
Genre-blending debut from FINNEAS collaborator.
Less than three years after releasing her breakout single ‘i wanna be your girlfriend’ on SoundCloud, girl in red has established herself as one of international pop’s most hotly tipped, and compellingly original, emerging stars. In a departure from the lo-fi indie sound of her early work, her debut album, if i could make it go quiet, finds the Norwegian artist embracing a vibrant, polished new approach – although the deeply personal quality of her songwriting remains as potent as ever.
Themes of mental health struggles, sexuality and adolescence are powerfully juxtaposed against a high-energy indie-pop soundscape, as she unapologetically pushes at the boundaries of both genre and social norms. At 22-years-old, girl in red embodies the key Gen Z values in her music – taking a provocative stance in the rejection of traditional labels, and boldly embracing freedom of expression. She’s also tapping into the sense of youthful alienation and anxiety that Euphoria has innovatively explored on screen – referencing the hit TV show on ‘Rue’.
Stylistically, she rarely settles – jumping from pop-rap influences on ‘Serotonin’, to the Americana-flavoured approach of First Aid Kit on ‘Rue’. With FINNEAS co-producing the former track, and girl in red’s roots in bedroom pop, the Billie Eilish comparisons are unavoidable. But the sound here rarely feels quite as groundbreaking as Eilish’s – with the genre-leaping nature of if i could make it go quiet suggesting that this is the work of an artist still finding her feet. Lyrically, however, the album serves as undeniable evidence of girl in red’s ever-expanding talents as a songwriter – shining in the perfect contradiction of existential crises articulated with irresistible confidence.