Cut Through the Noise: Phoebe Bridgers, Mckenna Grace, The Regrettes


Illustration by Isaac Wert

Maren Wilsey

Welcome to “Cut Through the Noise,” an entertainment column from the St. Louis Park Echo  covering new music releases. Every week, a different Echo staffer takes on the role as writer, reviewing recent single releases from a variety of artists. 

Phoebe Bridgers — ‘Day After Tomorrow’ ★★★★★

This year for her annual Christmas cover, Phoebe Bridgers released her version of Tom Waits’ “Day After Tomorrow.” As a huge fan of Bridgers, I’m a little biased because she can do no wrong in my eyes. However, even the most casual listener would agree that this song is utter perfection. In the original, Tom Waits has a deep, gravelly voice, which sounds very good, but Bridgers’ wistful tone suits it so much better. Paired with a combination of strings and piano, I can’t think of a better way to describe the sound other than angelic. A little over halfway through, she samples “Silent Night,” the haunting refrain echoing the themes of loneliness present throughout the rest of the song. The song clocks in at about six minutes, but I wish it was longer. It may be a basic adjective, but it’s just such a pretty song, I feel like I could listen for hours and not get tired of it.


Mckenna Grace — ‘Haunted House’ ★★★☆☆

Mckenna Grace, the actress known for playing the younger version of almost every blonde actress in Hollywood, has taken the leap into making music. It’s a bold choice for the fifteen-year-old, but she shows a lot of potential. Grace co-wrote the song, co-directed the video and collaborated with 3OH!3 member and producer Nathanial Motte for the production process. It’s very impressive how involved she was, especially at such a young age. Unfortunately, the song just wasn’t that good. It’s understandable that she wanted to play it safe for her debut, however, there was nothing that made it stand out from the crowd. In this day and age, anyone with even the smallest amount of internet fame believes they can make music. I will say this much though — she did better than most of the wannabe singers from TikTok. The beat is catchy, and the lyrics easily get stuck in your head. I don’t like the harsh beat drop and mechanical sounds of the chorus and bridge, but the rest of the song has a much softer and melodic tone. With some more trial and error, she could easily develop into something great. 

The Regrettes — ‘You’re So F***ing Pretty’ ★★★★★

Continuing their transition towards a more pure pop sound, The Regrettes’ latest release is a pop ballad filled with regret, longing and hollow melody. Possibly one of my favorite releases yet, the song is much more mellow than most and that’s what I like about it. While more upbeat music can be fun, this is a very good sound for the group. Lead singer Lydia Night’s voice is very well suited for the style. Accompanied by heavy piano, she sings of a failing relationship. The vocals and backing track have an echoing effect, like a metaphor for the distance between the subjects of the song. She sounds drained, like the relationship has taken away both her physical and emotional strength and stability. Picture walking through an underwater tunnel at an aquarium, the light shining through the water casting rippling reflections everywhere. If that light was music, it would be this song.