Rebecca Black’s latest proves she’s a pop star not a punchline

The singer, who was once mocked for her Friday track, reveals she’s not kidding

REBECCA SCHWARZ WAS THE World’s Most Hated 13-Year-Old in 2011. Fridaythe cheesy, auto-tuned pop song she made at home has become one of the most derided and parodied tracks on the internet.

In recent years, Black has tried to break away from her notorious past — she has worked with Katy Perry; remixed the infamous Friday with hyperpop pioneers 100gecs and Dorian Electra turning it into futuristic cyberbop; and came out as queer during the pandemic. With that in mind, it seems natural for Black’s new album to reinvent herself, one in which she sets her old self on fire and tries to come to herself.

The result is a fun, ethereal, and slightly demonic collection of pop songs that will whisk you away to a sweaty rave, one where you shouldn’t be ashamed of who you are. The influences of Black, SOPHIE, Madonna and Grimes are clear. songs like sick to my stomachThe smooth harmonies and synths of feel plucked straight out of the 80’s while sugar-sweet songs like doe-eyed Nod to your cyber-futuristic employees.

Misery loves company And what do i do with you are some of the album’s highlights, throbbing and euphoric, you can almost hear the fast cars speeding in the background. crumbs is another excellent pop song, Black’s breathless tone pairs perfectly with eerie and techno-tinged instrumentals. It embodies all the feelings that great pop bangers should have. It’s fun, sultry and sexy.

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During the album’s dips, the production rescues Black’s sometimes insipid vocals. It’s the case in songs like Cry hard enough And look at you, whose lyrics about the loss of a lover seem a little uninspired. Luckily, the shimmering instrumentals and fast-paced drums are there to bring you back to that dance party you pressed play for on the album.

Black’s brief display of vulnerability is what keeps this album captivating and sets it apart from the crush of pop newcomers. Especially considering her identity as a musician, especially as one who’s been in the spotlight since she was a tween. songs like destroy me And Artist feels almost meta in Black’s admission that she’s trying her best to entertain you. destroy me, a fast-paced drum-and-bass-inspired anthem, reckones on how easy it was for Black to keep changing for confirmation. When the album ends with , there is almost a feeling of uneasiness left behind ArtistBlack’s resignation that “her performance isn’t working”.

Ultimately, let them burn is an album about finding yourself, and while she might still have a few doubts, that’s what makes this album compelling proof that Black is a contender for a new generation of pop stars – the ones who just they want to be themselves, no matter how hard that seems to be.


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