Singer-songwriter Gracie Abrams released her debut album “Good Riddance” on Feb. 24, diving deep into the musician’s relationship life, mental health, and self-accountability in a beautiful way.
The entire album, which has a mix of pop and rhythm and blues sound, was written by Abrams and produced by Aaron Dessner.
The album starts off with a strike to the heart with the song "Best." The lyrics describe being in a relationship where the other person cares more than you. The song talks about constantly praying for your partner's downfall so they leave the relationship without you having to break things off. The song reflects on how cruel that is to do to someone with Abrams admitting, “I never was the best to you” in the lyrics.
Her second track, “I Know It Won’t Work,” was released with a music video the night the album dropped. The music video is filled with dark aesthetics as Abrams takes us through her feelings of wanting to be with someone again, but knows it will not work due to how things ended.
Track four, titled “Where Do We Go Now?” was the second single released for this album. It is one of the more fast-paced songs in an album filled with slow, sad songs. The song expresses Abrams' confusion on how she did not see the warning signs in a past relationship and simply asks, "where do we go now?" The song is a big question for Abrams on whether she should start fresh or continue to be in this toxic relationship.
“Amelie,” track seven, is arguably one of the softest, gentlest, and most heartfelt songs Abrams has ever released. It was the third single off the album and can be seen as a coming-out letter to Abrams fans. The song reminisces on an interaction Abrams had with the mystery girl Amelie. The lyrics express confusion, desperation, and longing for this girl. Abrams cannot decipher if this interaction was a dream or not and is stuck wondering why this left such an impact on her.
The first single Abrams released for this album is titled “Difficult.” It has a similar tune to “Where Do We Go Now?” with its upbeat rhythm. The song can best be described as a happy beat with soul-crushing lyrics.
Abrams does not hold back from being vulnerable with her listeners.
Part of the chorus states “I hope I wake up invisible / I’d be someone no one knows / I guess I’m just difficult,” with the bridge following “I’ve been drinking and staying up too late reliving bad decisions / I thought eventually my ranting here would fix it / I really think sometimes there’s something here that I’m missing.”
This song is one of fans' favorites with over 13 million streams on Spotify.
There is one happy song on this album and it is ironically called “The Blue.” The song talks about Abrams finding someone new who appreciates her and loves her. She expresses her feelings towards this person and how they helped her “come out of the blue.”
The album ends with a song called “Right Now.” It is a nearly six-minute heartbreaking song where Abrams reflects on her truest self:
“I’m so high but can’t look down / Left my past life on the ground / Think I’m more alive somehow… I’m so tired but can’t sit down / What if this is it for now?... I feel like myself right now.”
This song is a great closer for the project because it finally speaks on what Abrams has been talking about throughout the whole album: the feeling of floating, being homesick, and reaching out for something that is unattainable.
This album might take listeners through so many emotions. When listening to this album, please bring tissues and take breaks if needed. The lyrics are heavy but worth it.
I rate “Good Riddance” a 9 out of 10.
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