Sigrid – Sucker Punch
Everyone wants a slice of Sigrid’s success, but what’s her secret? New song ‘Business Dinners’ gives us a glimpse at the perfect storm that catapulted our favourite Scandi popstar to fame: “You just want me to be / sweeter, better, angel, yeah,” Sigrid laments, “pictures, numbers, figures, yeah / deeper, smarter / and I’ll just try to be me”. Despite any behind-the-scenes politics, it’s a refreshing dose of personality that sets Sigrid apart from the pack.
That punchy individuality runs thick through Sucker Punch, her first attempt at an LP after a steady trickle of singles and tours. Admittedly, that makes a good half of this debut into little more than a stroll/rave down memory lane – as can often the case with first albums – but revisiting the past two years of thumping releases is never a chore. Exploding into life with its titular single, Sucker Punch commands a breakneck speed, transitioning from one euphoric, synth-littered, lively pop number to the next. Breathers are not permitted – tucked in right at the tail of the record, only the poignant heartbreak of ‘Dynamite’ offers a change of pace, but don’t forget to breathe while taking in its majesty.
Sure, the true highs of Sucker Punch may have been unveiled long ago. Breakthrough chart hit ‘Strangers’, her battle-cry debut single ‘Don’t Kill My Vibe’, and the aforementioned ‘Dynamite’ all first saw the light of day in 2017, and such was Sigrid’s grand arrival that year that any new material would find it tricky to pack quite the same punch. Fortunately, however, the six additions do manage to maintain the quality standards we’ve come to expect of music’s most consistent popstar.
‘Mine Right Now’ and ‘Basic’ ooze charisma and confidence, using a tried and tested recipe for success with powerful, catchy choruses. Short and sweet love song ‘Level Up’ ebbs and flows with a calmer charm. ‘In Vain’ stands out as the most notable new song, with its guitar-strummed ‘Dynamite’-esque heartbreak exploding into unfettered synth joy for the final minute. The track’s effortless switch between moods is sheer testament to its creator’s talent as a songwriter.
Rather ironically for a song about loss of identity, Sigrid’s quirky sense of individuality is out in full force for ‘Business Dinners’. Sucker Punch’s final new offering, ‘Never Mine’, is the only place where its singer’s trademark personality is a little absent. It’s sad to see something so skippable make the album cut, particularly as those familiar with Sigrid’s live performances will lament the absence of concert bangers like ‘Go To War’ and ‘Credit’. But don’t fret; all is forgiven by the time the first notes of ‘Dynamite’ kick in.
Versatile, intensely likeable and brimming with bops, Sucker Punch is an accomplished debut from one of the industry’s most notable breakthrough talents. You do you, Sigrid, and we’ll keep listening.