Head Above Water image

Head Above Water

AlbumbyAvril Lavigne

Released in 2019, 12 tracks, 42 min

Alternative/Indie RockTeen Pop

Narratives

"Head Above Water"

Jun 03, 2019

Count on Avril Lavigne’s Head Above Water Album As Spiritually Guide into a Redemption. Just Don’t Fall Asleep.

cbenson
Written by @cbenson from Cyclolore  / 7 mins read
#AltIndie#AvrilLavigne#ClassicPop#HeadAboveWater#Pop#PopSoftRock#rock

The first thing I notice about Avril Lavigne’s most current album Head Above Water is the amazing clarity in how amazing her vocals sound. I don’t know I guess I just expected to hear the aging she has undergone as we all have, in her actual voice as she sings but no that isn’t the case. She sounds just like she has through all of the past decade and actually even more gorgeous and elegant this time around. Avril Lavigne keeps her signature empowering ballads in alive in Head Above Water and it truly emphasises the elegancy in her vocal control like in “It Was In Me” or “Crush”. I feel reborn in something that has been long lasting in time, and I even get strong senses of those nostalgia from those early middle school days of mine from when she released that legendary album Let Go of hers that dropped back in 2002. Due to the fact that Avril Lavigne has detailed a life-threatening battle with Lyme Disease you can 100% feel the conquering of in this Head Above Water. A lot of her past songs just gave me less stronger vibes than where she is now with this current album. There wasn’t as much consistent triumph in the messages of the tracks of some of her previous albums I feel and maybe it's because she conquered a near-death experience as she touches on in “Warrior” where she sings “I won’t bow I won’t break, no I’m not afraid to do whatever it takes.”

An Emotional Packing Punch of a Record

I’m going to have to speak on how much of an emotional affect this album can have on someone who is sensitive to feeling others pain and experiences. Head Above Water saw Avril Lavigne wanting to escape, avoid pain, fly away being set free like a birdie even in which she sang about in “Birdie”. I feel like there’s so much friction to end up in the happy place that Head Above Water offers in its true intention. Yet somehow Avril Lavigne is having the grandest struggle getting through a what she describes as “hell” she’s needing to be saved from before singing “Angels and devils fighting over me, take me to heaven, wake me up from this dream.” The spiritual warfare that is rooted in the music and the lyrics just takes me to a dark place. For me this dark place has a light though and that's the undeniable light that's stored in Avril Lavigne’s voice when she sings out. Yet it never goes away through the album and that's the drowning side of the album for me unless it’s being saved by the high energy banger’s on the album. The high energy tracks respectively come in a variety of styles from the Pop/ Punk Rock “Dumb Blonde” that’s as ballistic as I’ve heard Avril Lavigne sound ever I think. There’s also the fast paced track named “Tell Me Its Over”, both songs can be a much needed pick me up as the general movement of Head Above Water is taken more serious and strikes a more intimate place. Avril Lavigne isn’t one of those artist that you read about constantly in the tabloids in the scadels or the drama though I’m not implying that she is perfect or anything. Yet when I listen to her on the album my heart holds an incredible soft spot for her so I’m definitely cheering for her through out any difficult time she’s faced against and would be devastated if anything ever happened to her.

For Some Reason Mature Emanates Boredom After While

I can point out the amazing and interesting sides of Head Above Water yet I still have to be real about how boring I can feel in this album sometimes. Just for starters the incohesive decision making behind the amazing track that was also the 2nd single from the album “Dumb Blonde” being on this album with these other songs is almost like taking a quick detour into another album for a breather, I just don’t want to stick it to Avril Lavigne because it’s her nature she’s just a simplistic, less calculative artist. Being the fan of an artist that makes things interesting this way is randomly amazing but maybe only because it was a rare moment of relevant fun, who knows. Another thing is Head Above Water wasn’t one of the albums were Avril Lavigne thought it would be so cool to joke around on, she’s had a more playful immature aesthetic to her brand in the past. I’ve just never known her to be the most sophisticated chick when it comes to her lyrics. Considering that she hasn’t released a project since 2014 in her battle with Lyme Disease its something that should be expected and accepted a pass in that perspective. That's something serious that would take a person inspirationally to a different kind of place than wanting to be super party friendly. Not only that but she had a break up with singer Chad Kroeger of popular Rock band Nickleback even though Avril Lavigne wrote on social media that they’ll always and forever be friends. You never know how this can affect someone's art whether for the good or for the bad. This is one of those relationships that truly breaks your heart to see come to and end in that way because Nickleback is also a hit-making powerhouse and they’re responsible for a lot of good memories from my high school career in the Mid 2000’s and so was Avril Lavigne. So who knows what could’ve been the elemental pieces to such good music back then because it surely doesn’t come around as often now a days with the new styles of music that have rolled on through.

A Spiritually Guided Odyssey to Perseverance

Labeling the takeaway thesis of Head Above Water in a positive light and relation to spiritual direction is by no means implying that other singers or Pop/Rock artist have less spiritually essential albums it's just that Avril Lavigne's journey is one that seems to reach from beyond just the surroundings of music. “Head Above Water” is just going to be one of those songs that truly never goes away in my life and is super relatable to the mass. Life inevitably has its ups and down but music can be a potent and magical dose of medicine to get you through something depending on what the material consists of. “Head Above Water” truly invokes the strength that we all hold deep down in times of disparity and low vibes and can empower you through the roof. There really was no better way to set off on the journey that Head Above Water promises because the album artwork cover is dark and you just know some deep stuff is about to go down. It would’ve taken a more seasoned Avril Lavigne to deliver the kind of experience that Head Above Water gives and that's one of the appreciative scopes of this spiritual event that the album is. Could you imagine being affected with a chronic illness and thinking you would never be able to do the one thing that frees your heart ever again? If so what would your follow-up album to that realization sound like?

May 10, 2019

Head Above Water by Avril Lavigne, mixed feelings

JorgeDiaz
Written by @JorgeDiaz from Electro Arpegio  / 6 mins read

First of all, I want to clarify that it will never be my intention to offend or criticize people who are going through the terrible experience of suffering from Lyme disease or the aftermath of it. This, is a critique strictly to the most recent record material that Avril Lavigne has given us in her album Head Above Water and if I mention her condition of suffering the sequels of the aforementioned disease, it is only to equate her with her creative stage in these days. As she says at the end of the video that opens the album, I also make votes for all of us to unite: "To find resources on Lyme Disease PREVENTION ... Educate yourself on doctors and TREATMENT ... Learn more about the must current scientific RESEARCH ... And JOIN OUR FIGHT AGAINST LYME, Visit: www.TheAvrilLavigneFoundation.org” – Having said that, let's move on to the record. Undoubtedly, one of my favorite singers in her beginnings, with a style that nevertheless was fresh, had enough elements to be taken seriously and not, as in many of the cases of the female singers in each stage of the pop and commercial rock, to pass as a hollow and silly girl who only showed a pretty face to ensure success. Always attentive to what happened with those of her age, Avril Lavigne, projected the problems, dreams and aspirations of her generation. We all remember with love her first album in 2002, Let Go and those who came until 2013, Avril Lavigne. There came an understandable pause of almost six years and came the disc that we are analyzing today, I must say that Head Above Water, causes me mixed feelings. While there are a couple of themes that can be rescued from the musical point of view, the production and the arrangements in most of the songs lacks the enough strength to hook a demanding audience. Of course, her base of followers of all times, should be grateful and very happy to have her again, which I really celebrate, because, after all, an artist is due to its most devoted audience. On the side of the lyrics, I find deep moments and, at the same time, depressive. The constant in the background of the themes is perhaps, the terrible experience of her illness that does not leave her in peace. Unfortunately, it is a distractor for fully concentrate on creating songs as before, but nobody can blame her for that.

When It Is Said, But It Is Not Expressed

If we consider that the songs have two basic elements: music and lyric, we accept that both have to be connected both in the sense of what we want to say with the lyric, and in the emotion that is wanted to be transmitted through the musical language. If we wanted to put the lyrics of a Black Sabbath song in the melody of some Britney Spears song, we would surely be condemned to the electric chair. Of course, I'm exaggerating, and this is not the case of Avril Lavigne's album; all I want is to illustrate how the two elements are linked in a union difficult to divide and that they should show coherence between them. And that's what I think Avril's album lacks, an organic connection between lyrics and music. The depth of a song with the lyrics of "Warrior" is admirable but, disappointing the musical arrangement and interpretation that lacks strength and becomes a theme very close to the style of Celine Dion, far from what Avril Lavigne would have wanted to convey. Is it the moment that is happening? Is it the lack of interest on the part of her producers to advise her in moments where it is impossible to be concentrated one hundred percent and delivered completely to the creation of this record precisely because of the consequences of her illness? That's where a direct claim comes to everyone involved in the project, since they were obliged to take more care of their artist and make her see that there was a lack of connection. It could have been the case that, regardless of the advice, Avril would have decided on this style because her mood was far from the energy and determination that characterized her. We will never know what was behind these decisions and there will only remain the idea that it is an incomplete or disjointed record. Something that I will never forgive in this album is the inclusion of Nicki Minaj in the song, "Dumb Blonde", horrendous!!! I do not want to say more about this because I do not want to be offensive, but I want to make it clear that it is the worst mistake of this record. Do not re-mix the water with the oil please!!! With some brushstrokes of the influence that Pat Benatar has had in her career, the album passes with little Glory.

What Is Next

In the career of a singer there are always ups and downs, you cannot always maintain a level due to many circumstances ranging from the personal, professional, fashion trends and even the economic aspect, so no one should panic after listening to an unfortunate record of their favorite artist. We must have patience and wait for what follows. For the time being I wish for her and all the people in the world who suffer from Lyme disease who soon find in science and doctors something that allows them to fully recover their health. In the case of Avril Lavigne, I'm sure she will soon be in tune with her next album and will recover the best times of her musical stage. For now, the Canadian born in 1984 keeps the love of all her fans who will fill their concerts and sing with her each of the songs that have made her famous. As few, has more than 21 million followers in Twitter around the world and many more in other social networks, that shows the love and loyalty of those who will be with her forever. Time flies by and soon we will be enjoying a better album of this great star.

May 08, 2019
An “Emotional Journey” That Draws Inspiration From The Struggles In Life
The Canadian pop-rock singer Avril Lavigne released her sixth studio album Head Above Water in February 2019 through BMG record label, after a long gap of six years since she released her previous full-length album. There is a total of twelve tracks in this album with a total time length of about forty-two minutes. Internet sources say that the album is inspired from Avril’s battle with Lyme’s disease, which she describes on Twitter as “personal, dear, intimate, dramatic, raw, powerful, strong, unexpected” and “a true emotional journey”. The album received mixed reviews from the music critics. Out of 5 stars, AllMusic rated the album 3.5, The Independent rated it 3, The Guardian rated it only 2 stars and Rolling Stone rated it 2.5 stars. The album received an average rating of 5.5 out of 10 by Pitchfork, and Metacritic gave it an overall rating of 55 out of 100. Though the album seems to be inspired by emotions and it has showcased Avril’s powerful voice and her vocal ability, but the lyrics seem to be weak, shallow and uninspired, as most critics say. Arielle Gordon from Pitchfork headlined the album review as “Though an interesting showcase of her powerful and newfound voice, the Canadian pop star’s comeback too often lapses into the rote, the stale, or the uninspired” .However, this is an album that showcases her vocal range, rather than her usual scream singing techniques. The album cover image is having black as the dominant colour which I felt intriguing as this goes very well with what she tried to portray within the album- herself and her reflection in the water, all in blackish tones which sets the emotional outlook of the album that she tried to represent through her music. On the other hand, the feedback from the listeners on Metacritic were mostly positive, with only a few mixed or negative reviews. The listeners said they liked the purity and freshness of music in the album, along with her voice, however, some agreed with the critics that the lyrics were comparatively shallow. The album was featured in many music charts across the world including United States and United Kingdom where it reached the first position in the Independent albums category.
Mar 04, 2019
Avril Lavigne Struggles To Pick Up The Pieces Of Her Shattered Career In Head Above Water
When you think of Avril Lavigne, there’re typically two images which pop up immediately in your head; The generic but absolutely enrapturing faux-Pop Punk era of her career with the iconic Teen bops “Complicated” & “Sk8er Boi” – the latter of which ruled my eight grade summer – or the annoying, self-absorbed, culturally-insensitive garbage of her third album when she was trying to make the whole ‘I’m a fucking princess” gimmick stick in songs like “Girlfriend” form her horrendous third record – After The Best Damn Thing dropped in 2007, it was pretty much unanimously decided that the mainstream music industry would excommunicate Lavigne as a person & a musician, nipping things in the bud in order to prevent her from causing further damage to the Pop music realm, an act that for all intents & purposes actually seemed to work in subsequent years as she faded from all popular media altogether. Her next few records barely made a splash outside her immediate circle of followers & the world seemed genuinely pleased with her absence as the industry continued to shift away from Club Dance & Pop Punk sensibilities, some even going so far as to claim she’d committed suicide in various conspiracy theories to explain her irrelevance in the modern age, but a short stint with Lyme disease would soon thrust her back into the limelight, softening everyone’s harsh criticisms & building hope that her forthcoming record Head Above Water would be the one to break the cycle, presenting audiences with a more mature Lavigne who’d learned from her missteps, prepared to reintroduce herself to the masses in a major way – Well, I’m not one to discredit the absolutely devastating effects of life-threatening diseases, but it seems we might’ve given her far too big a benefit of the doubt, as this record is once-again a heaping pile of filth no amount of sympathy could wash clean.

Official Music Videos

"Head Above Water"

Live Videos

"Head Above Water"

Featuring Remixes

"Head Above Water"

Album Info

"Head Above Water"

Released

  • Feb 15, 2019

Genres

  • Alternative/Indie Rock
  • Teen Pop

Label

  • BMG

Producer

  • Avril Lavigne
  • Stephan Moccio
  • Johan Carlsson
  • Jon Levine
  • JR Rotem
  • Mitch Allan
  • Chris Baseford

About

Head Above Water is the sixth studio album by Canadian singer Avril Lavigne. It was released on February 15, 2019, through BMG Rights Management. It is Lavigne's first studio release since her self-titled fifth studio album (2013), marking the longest gap between two of her studio albums. Lavigne assumed an integral role in the album's production and collaborated with several producers including Stephan Moccio, Chris Baseford, Johan Carlsson, Lauren Christy from The Matrix, Ryan Cabrera, Travis Clark of We the Kings, Bonnie McKee, JR Rotem and Mitch Allan among others.
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