The pop punker’s seventh album blows all preconceptions out of the water with a sense of exhilarating freedom There's no better time for Canadian singer songwriter and alt pop icon Avril Lavigne to make a barnstorming return to her pop punk roots than 2022. With some of the sounds and styles that she helped usher in the early noughties, once again riding the pop zeitgeist powered by people like Olivia Rodrigo, Willow Smith and the ubiquitous pop punk godfather of Travis Barker, Avril has returned to take her rightful place at the top of this particular punk mountain. After her 2019 album Head Above Water dealt with deeply personal introspection detailing her battle with Lyme Disease through the medium of graceful piano balladry, Love Sux is brash, bratty, outrageously fun and super vibrant.
While her previous ballad-heavy album certainly had its moments, and offered an impressive showcase of Lavigne's power-house vocals; at its worst it was something Lavigne's music up until that point had never been - boring. You can say what you want about Lavigne's follow-up Love Sux, but boring it certainly is not. Buoyed by classic pop-punk deference to power chords and the exhilarating drumming of Travis Barker, Love Sux brings the energy up to a 10 almost immediately and rarely turns it down across the album's 33 minutes.
Having made history, smashed records and consistently blazed a trail of her own as an uncompromising force in music and culture, Avril Lavigne has finally returned to her pop-punk roots. The Canadian artist rose to fame at 16 with singles 'Complicated' and 'Sk8er Boi', both of which earned her the title of 'Pop Punk Princess' from the media, and undoubtedly paved the way for female-driven, punk-influenced pop music in the early 2000s. While her previous album 'Head Above Water' certainly had some show-stopping vocal moments, ballad-heavy music was the least people had expected from the skate punk persona and (dare I say) a bit boring.