Cut Through the Noise: Ava Max, Paramore, Gracie Abrams


Anya Panday

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.

Ava Max — ‘One of Us’ ★★★☆☆

Fair use from Genius

In anticipation of her upcoming album, “Diamonds & Dancefloors,” Ava Max has been releasing song clips and singles. Her latest single, “One of Us,” is another single from the album. The song describes a relationship where one person is giving their all, while the other person isn’t committed in the slightest. The lyrics are very surface level — they mean exactly what they say. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as it allows the topic to feel much more relatable and accessible. The sound of the single is very on-brand for Max and it feels like a typical pop song. The sound and concept isn’t original, but it’s still executed well and enjoyable to listen to. The song is meant to be fun and relatable and it does it’s job well. Overall, it’s a good song and I wouldn’t be mad if it came up on the radio, but I’d never add it to one of my playlists.

Paramore — ‘C’est Comme Ça’ ★★★★★

Fair use from Genius

The rock band Paramore is famously known for hits like “Still into You” and “Hard Times.” The latest addition to their long list of well-produced hits is a recently released single, “C’est Comme Ça,” meaning “that’s just how it is.” The single is part of their upcoming album, “This Is Why,” out Feb. 10. The song’s chorus is largely in French, but the verses feature English lyrics. The song is about the struggle between wanting to get better, but experiencing how hard recovery is. The chorus has a higher-pitched, almost silly melody line and it’s well contrasted by the more spoken tone of the different verses. This juxtaposition keeps the listener engaged and allows the song to have a healthy variety of sound. The lighter feel of the chorus also allows the deeper meaning of the song to be easier to digest. Though the song is sad, it doesn’t feel too depressing to listen to. Overall, this single is another testament to Paramore’s talent, and I’ll be having it on repeat for the foreseeable future.

Gracie Abrams — ‘Where do we go now?’  ★★★★☆

Fair use from Genius

Growing music sensation Gracie Abrams recently dropped a new single, “Where do we go now?,” to preview her upcoming album, “Good Riddance.” Though Abrams has dropped two EPs (Extended Play) throughout her career, “Good Riddance” will be her first album. “Where do we go now?” is about the emotional distress that comes with being in a relationship with a partner that you don’t love anymore, but who still loves you. The song is simple, with a soft melody and even softer vocal tone, along with a repetitive chorus that only consists of the phrase “where do we go now?” The gentle tone of Abrams’ voice is tactfully used and it allows the song to have an overall depressing feeling that lets the listener truly understand how Abrams feels. The repetitiveness of the chorus allows the beautiful lyricism of the verses to shine and the verses truly amplify that already sad feeling of the melody. However, while the simplicity of the song is beautiful, I still felt myself wishing there was a little more depth to the song, either in the melody or in the words of the chorus. The verses were beautifully done, but I wish there was a little more development of everything in between those verses.