Sigrid’s debut release oozes with charm, and is filled to the brim with well written tracks and fantastic production.
Back on the 8th of March, Norwegian singer/songwriter Sigrid released her debut studio album “Sucker Punch”. Sigrid began making waves with the release of a few noteworthy EP’s back in 2017, but not until now did she release her first full length effort. The record is mostly filled with upbeat pop songs, however some of the standout tracks happen when Sigrid starts to dip her toes into other alternative sounds.
The record’s first and titular track “Sucker Punch” will instantly pull you in as the listener, and does exactly what an opening song should do. You will know instantly whether you’ll enjoy this record after listening to this song. It begins with a synth and electronic drum beat, softly accompanied by Sigrid’s calm vocals. While at the start it may seem like your regular old, generic pop song, the vocal delivery begins to phase into a strange and slightly uncomfortable melody. However, just as smooth as it happened, it morph’s back into the original topline. This was an instant display of how Sigrid knows what she is doing, and is trying to experiment with new sounds, whilst still making some fun, catchy tracks. The chorus on “Sucker Punch” is an explosion of melodic joy, and is guaranteed to stick in your head all day.
While the album’s most popular single “Strangers” isn’t my particular cup of tea, it does a good job of encapsulating what the record is all about. With tracks like “Mine Right Now,” “Basic” and “Sight of You,” it’s clear that not only is “Sucker Punch” a fun and catchy album, but the song-writing and production are also top-notch. The fifth track “Don’t Feel Like Crying” is a powerful song, following the narrator’s break-up with a partner, but choosing not to sit in self-pity and feel sad for herself. The following track “Level Up,” is a low-tempo, creative piece, which uses the aspect of levelling-up in a video game as a metaphor for going through a difficult time, but then overcoming the obstacle to reach the next part.
Three of my favourite songs on the LP come back-to-back-to-back, with “In Vain,” “Don’t Kill My Vibe,” and “Business Dinners”. “In Vain” is a slow, acoustic track, that truly shows off the raw power and passion in Sigrid’s voice. Just when you think the song is about to end, the song phases into an upbeat finish with the peppy vocals singing “Give it, give it up. Give it, give it up baby.” “Don’t Kill My Vibe” is a refreshing track detailing Sigrid’s experience with a studio songwriter, and how she felt that he was uninterested in her opinion as an artist, and “killed her vibe”. Then “Business Dinners” is an extremely fun song, where Sigrid states that she just wants to be herself and will not portray a fake image of herself to the media. The record closes with a beautiful piano ballad titled “Dynamite” that pulls the album back down to earth after all the party anthems, to bring “Sucker Punch” to a close with a raw, emotional conclusion.
I think that what makes this record stand out to me, is that it isn’t just a collection of catchy songs (although that is definitely on the table). Sigrid’s personal flare and charm truly won me over after just a few tracks, and her easy-going, girl next door persona makes her feel much more relatable to the listener. While not an absolutely flawless album, “Sucker Punch” is an absolute joy of an experience and is a fantastic and valiant effort for a debut album.