The student-generated news site of Mount Saint Joseph Academy

The Campanile

The student-generated news site of Mount Saint Joseph Academy

The Campanile

The student-generated news site of Mount Saint Joseph Academy

The Campanile

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Olivia Rodrigo: “Guts” Review

Rodrigo spills her guts in this cathartic sophomore album.
Larissa Hoffman
The cover art for Rodrigo’s sophomore album “Guts.”

If hell is a teenage girl, her name is Olivia Rodrigo. In 2021, Rodrigo took the world by storm with her debut single “driver’s license.” It was a hit. People everywhere were entranced by her angelic vocals, cutting lyricism, and the alleged love triangle that may have inspired the song.

At just 17, she had the world begging for more. Insert “Sour”: a ballad-heavy, heartbreaking, mammoth of a debut. Its success was unheard of, breaking records, winning three Grammys, and going four times platinum. By 18 Rodrigo was already making waves. If nothing else, “Sour” proved Olivia Rodrigo would be a force to reckon with in the music industry. “Guts,” however, solidified her spot at the top of the game.

“Guts” is a dazzling sophomore album that displays the complexities of moving from girlhood into adulthood, along with showing off her range as an artist. While one can still find her iconic heart-wrenching ballads in “Guts,” they are no longer the focus. Instead, Rodrigo moves towards a pop-punk vibrant sound.

The prime examples of this are songs like, “bad idea right,” “all american b!tch,” and “get him back!” These songs showed Rodgrio’s cheekier side, allowing her to make fun of herself, along with listeners a fresh sound reminiscent of 90s realness. 

Many people were imminently drawn to this sound, LaSalle College High School junior Sean Kaltz became entranced by it and in turn “can NOT turn it off.” 

However, not everyone fell in love with it.  Isabella Durso ‘27 explained how she was more partial to the angstier ballads, something Rodgrio most likely accounted for, as “Guts” is still riddled with tear-jerkers. 

Songs like “logical” and “making the bed” fill her sad girl quota. Yet, this time around it is less focused solely on young love, also touching on regret, rage, and self-fault. A prime example of this is the lead single, “vampire.” The song is a heart-wrenching cautionary tale with lines like, “cause girls your age know better,” which show off her top-tier lyricism. With that line, Rodrigo addresses the person the song is about–essentially saying, women your age know better than to date you, yet you prey on younger girls.

Each word she writes is so authentic and something that feels like it is solely hers and ours, making each song extremely relatable.

Many Mounties believe Rodrgio’s lyrics were stolen straight from their diaries. Some go so far as to say it speaks to our generation. 

Olivia Duffy ‘25 saw herself in “teenage dream” as she often feels anxious at the idea of reaching her peak too soon. Jamie Miller ‘25 admitted to deeply connecting with Rodgrio’s hilarious depiction of a love-hate relationship in “get him back!.” 

The album is a no-skip, yet there was one song that shone brighter than the rest: “all american b!tch.” Rodrigo opens the album with a satirical masterpiece that chronicles the insane expectations put on young women, an idea that shines throughout all aspects of the song.

It begins with the soft strumming of the guitar as she melodically sings about the manic pixie dreamgirl fantasy, “I feel for your every little issue, I know just what you mean.” Then comes the chorus, blaring drums, and sarcasm. This only builds as by the second chorus she becomes more forceful, before leading into the scathing bridge.

The bridge is filled with angst and highlights the contradictions of being a young girl in her lyrics and whispering screams: “I don’t get angry when I’m pissed; I’m the eternal optimist.”  The song’s conclusion, however, is what seals it into its top spot.

She goes from absolutely screaming her head off to politely singing, “All the time, I’m grateful all the time; I’m sexy, but I’m kind; I’m pretty when I cry,” showing, yet again, how young women are told to behave: always grateful, always kind, always beautiful. 

Rodrigo birthed a heartfelt, heartbreaking, and hilarious sophomore album. So, whether you need to laugh or cry, pick up your headphones and queue “Guts.”

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About the Contributor
Kaelyn McFadden
Kaelyn McFadden, Staff Writer
Kaelyn McFadden is a current junior at the Mount and has been on The Campanile for the past two years. This year, she is exciting to share her virtuoso knowledge on pop artist and pop culture. Outside of school you can find her reading, listening to music, and studying along with working hard as President of the Taylor Swift Club and Vice President of Sisters Club.
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  • V

    VioletOct 31, 2023 at 11:10 am

    My dad will never admit it but he’s a huge livie and thought this article was a great outlook on the album!

  • A

    adviserOct 19, 2023 at 9:52 am

    Wow, Kaelyn! You are truly growing as a writer. Your passion for the topic comes through beautifully. 🙂