Head Above Water Review



Elissa Dames , Editor

After disappearing from the music industry for a few years, Avril Lavigne has returned with a comeback song that has given her a completely new identity. Her single, Head Above Water, was released in Sep of 2018.

        Lavigne had taken time away from the spotlight while battling lyme disease. During this difficult time, she found herself writing songs.

        “I was able to write songs from my bed, and ‘Head Above Water’ is a song that I wrote a night that I felt like I was actually dying and had kind of accepted it,” Lavigne told Billboard in an interview during her magazine cover shoot.

        Head Above Water is not like anything Lavigne has written before. It has a more mature sound and meaning.

        In the song, Lavigne sings, “God, keep my head above water. I lose my breath at the bottom. Come rescue me, I’ll be waiting. I’m too young to fall asleep”.

These lyrics are personal to her experiences, but were written in a way that other people can relate to them. As a songwriter, she has taking simple, everyday words and made them into something meaningful.

        Musically, the song has a real, simplistic sound. It starts of with solo piano chords, then halfway through the first verse, the piano is joined by violins and a basic percussion line. The simplicity of the music really adds to Lavigne’s lyrics. It allows the lyrics to stand out and be heard against the music.

The phrase, “less is more”, applies especially in music. This method works for this song because the lyrics are so personal to Lavigne herself. The more raw a track is, the more meaningful and real it is perceived as. It becomes a more relatable piece that is taken seriously.

Lavigne was previously known for her edgy, pop songs from her past albums. Head Above Water also serves as a demonstration of her growth not only as a writer, but as a person. Lavigne now has a unique sound compared to other artists today. While other songwriters were going for flashy music and quick, meaningless lyrics, Lavigne wrote a truly breathtaking song that reminded people what music is supposed to sound like.

        Head Above Water is an anthem for anyone who needs motivation to keep going, and today’s society needs it more than ever. Lavigne’s single will be joined by new music in her upcoming album coming out in 2019.