Review of Olivia Rodrigo’s Sour


Mollie Steinhoff

On May 21st, 2021, Disney Channel star Olivia Rodrigo released her debut album, Sour, to the public. The singer reached the charts after her hit-song, “Driver’s License”, went viral across the world and gained a major fanbase in the process. Bringing us on a journey through heartbreak and teenage lust, Rodrigo’s album captured the hearts of many young adults struggling through the same emotions.

With every new artist out there, comes a new story. After the release of “Driver’s License”, fans dove into the song to try to figure out who the song was written about. TikTokers and Rodrigo fans speculated the song was written about her co-star, Joshua Bassett, and former Disney Channel star, Sabrina Carpenter. The suspected love triangle immediately captured the attention of the media and the world, making it the first debut song to stay at number one on the charts for eight consecutive weeks.

After the rumors about the love triangle and Olivia’s hit-song, all 11 tracks included in Sour each went viral. She opens her musical roller coaster with “Brutal”, a pop-rock piece about the struggles teenagers have to go through, the perfect hook to capture her intended audience. While most of her songs have the theme of heartbreak, each track is musically different. Rodrigo does a great job mixing her album, so that the world isn’t just listening to the same thing. She adds piano ballads, rock styles, and even some potential 80s sounds to spice up her album and create music people want to listen to.

Many people fell in love with this album, not only because it represents heartbreak, something many people experience, but also because Olivia displays her own insecurities through her music. In Olivia Horn’s review on Sour she states, “there’s more to Rodrigo’s writing than revenge; Sour gives her occasion to examine her own insecurities,”. A popular artist proclaiming everything they’re insecure about makes listeners feel less alone and allows them to relate to the artist. Lyrics such as, “I wore makeup when we dated because I thought you’d like me more” hits home with many teenage girls who do the same things to impress the guys that they like. Rodrigo captures so many levels of relatableness to her intended audience, that it’s hard for

girls not to feel something when they listen to another teenage girl confess her thoughts and insecurities through songs.

Rodrigo fans and TikTokers around the world have been speculating theories ever since her debut came out. One major theory is that each song represents one of the seven stages of grief. For example, the rock-heavy song, “Good 4 U”, is sorted into anger/bargaining while her second single, “Deja Vu”, is put into the pain/guilt category. Another theory fans have is that Rodrigo will release her next album and call it “Sweet” because of its contrast with “Sour”. Fans noticed that she has unreleased music out there written about falling in love that was not put onto her debut album. Most people believe she will drop those songs on another, happier, album about what it’s like to be in love, instead of falling out of it. Whatever the singer-songwriter intends to do next, is sure to be as great and popular as the heart-wrenching, Sour.