When Canadian singer Avril Lavigne was introduced to the world with her first hit single “Complicated”, I’m sure I am not the only one who had ‘complicated’ feelings towards her. I am not sure if I like her or not. She looks like a pop princess, but she plays rock and alternative music. If I remember it right, her first concert in the Philippines didn’t really go smoothly. I wasn’t sure if she is a mean girl or simply misunderstood. Or maybe jetlagged? I dunno. She appears rebellious, but her song lyrics is relatable to most teens. I had that realization when I borrowed a friend’s cassette tape for “Let Go” and listening to it now more than 15 years later, I am amazed on how I remember particular moments of my high school days.
Released in 2002, 13 tracks, 49 min
Our world exists on the idea that a balance has to occur for life to be on an even keel. Weird as it may sound, that also applies to music and throughout the different epochs in pop music, that seeking of a balance had to happen, otherwise one wouldn’t exist without the other. In the turn of this century, pop music was heavily into sexualized young female teenagers doing songs which were thinly veiled seduction songs which seemed like grown up adults putting words in the mouth of then teenagers Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera. So it was no surprise that the teenage audience immediately latched on to Avril Lavigne, and her anthem, the aptly titled Complicated. Not everyone in teendom looks like and can identify with the blonde bombshells Spears and Aguilera and as teenybopper as their music was back then, those songs didn’t quite capture the confusion and angst feels when one is in that stage of their lives. So Avril Lavigne’s entrance with her debut album Let Go was perfect. A balance was needed in pop music at that time, and Lavigne’s yang counterbalanced the Spears/Aguilera’s yin. Frankly, the music of both camps needed each other since they were quite complementary.
In the years since she first captured the hearts of mainstream audiences everywhere with her delightfully Alternative attitude & approachable Skater Punk aesthetics, Avril Lavigne has more or less fallen down the rabbit hole into a nightmarish world of mediocrity, delving further & further into monotony with every subsequent album. In Under My Skin, she seemingly dropped her streetwise persona altogether in favour of a more Liz Phair sort of kitsch-iness, she regressed into a self-centered snob of a pre-teen performer in The Best Damn Thing through which she not only insulted Japanese Kawaii culture several times but also created a brand new standard of garishly bratty behaviour for young girls to identify themselves with in the Teen Pop romp “Girlfriend,” followed by two consecutive albums – Goodbye Lullaby & Avril Lavigne – that were so banal nobody even remembered they came out, too focused on her relationship with Nickleback frontman Chad Kroeger to give a damn about her music; This, of course, culminated in her wholly underwhelming 2019 release Head Above Water that saw her adopt a faux-Christian persona after a short stint with Lyme disease in an attempt to ‘reinvent’ her public image, a move that only served to prove how devoid of character & integrity she is as a musician – Looking back, then, it’s understandable that her breakout album Let Go still sits atop the list as the singular most important piece of media she’s ever released, figuratively overflowing with personality & capitalizing on the very essence of adolescence at the turn of the century, youngsters looking for any sort of mainstream outlet for their furious angst that could delight the senses whilst straying far away from the overwhelming positivity of the Teen Pop acts who’d ruled the airwaves in the years prior. It was & still is a picture-perfect representation of just how awkward the transition from child to teen can be in the American scene as you struggle to find your place amidst the hormonal changes of puberty, trying on different personas & finding cliques of like-minded individuals through which your unbridled angst & apathy can be channeled for good. There wasn’t any concern for grandiose thought experiments or introspective analyses of life’s purpose, just a bunch of entertaining Pop Punk numbers with a feminine touch that made every teen want to find a girl just like her, showing that you didn’t have to be some blonde bombshell or the most talented singer in the world to be noticed so long as you had some raw emotions boiling in your heart & a counter-culture attitude that said ‘fuck the system.’
Official Music Videos
- Sep 06, 2002
- Alternative/Indie Rock
- Teen Pop
- Antonio "L.A." Reid (executive)
- The Matrix
- Clif Magness
- Curt Frasca
- Peter Zizzo
Let Go is the debut studio album by Canadian singer-songwriter Avril Lavigne. It was released on June 4, 2002, by Arista Records. For a year after signing a record deal with Arista, Lavigne struggled due to conflicts in musical direction. She relocated to Los Angeles, where she recorded her earlier materials for the album; the kind of sound to which the label was not amenable. She was paired to the production team The Matrix, who understood her vision for the album.Continue reading at Wikipedia...
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