Avril Lavigne review by Avril Lavigne

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  • Released: Nov 1, 2013
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 6
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 7.3 Good
  • Users' score: 3.6 (73 votes)
Avril Lavigne: Avril Lavigne
1

Sound — 8
Avril Lavigne is a Canadian pop artist who certainly comes from rock roots. Aside from the recent success of her music, Lavigne was in the news for marrying Nickelback frontman, Chad Kroeger. Fittingly, Kroeger makes a guest vocal appearance on the album and Lavigne covers the Nickelback song "How You Remind Me," which can be found with other covers on the CD's deluxe version. On the off chance that you have not heard of Avril Lavigne, you should be warned that she can easily be thrown in with the Katy Perrys and Miley Cyruses of the world. The percussion instruments are definitely programmed, like those in most mainstream pop and rap; many people find this a turn off (although the quality of the programming itself may be a turn off to begin with). So if you cannot stand this type of mainstream music, like some if not many of the users of UG, then you have been warned. The point of the aforementioned warning is to implore those who would troll to go do so elsewhere because the undeniable truth is that Avril Lavigne's music is respectable enough to warrant fair criticism and spirited yet civil debate. Actually, considering this is Ultimate-GUITAR.com, it is easy to give Avril Lavigne praise because the album's guitar work, in my opinion is the best part of the album. Obviously, the high school girls who listen to this will be listening for Lavigne's voice, which sounds somewhere between Adele and Taylor Swift, and her melodic hooks, which are certainly there. Somewhat as a gift to us, these songs that appeal primarily to the radio are easily discernible within the first couple of seconds, so it's pretty to avoid them and save the heartache and get to the meat of this album, which really isn't half-bad if you're willing to give it a chance. I will admit that most of Lavigne's choruses are cheap, tacky remakes of the standard pop song, but her guitar work, if you can find it, is really worth listening to. It's probably because I'm a guitarist, but I truly think that "Bad Girl," the only time when she prominently uses an electric guitar, is the best song on the album. The song has a catchy alternative, punk riff and Marilyn Manson's guest appearance is priceless and complements her vocal melodies, which are decently original, well. In addition, her acoustic guitar work is tasteful and creative even though it is confined to the limitations of the pop song structure (one of the most visible invisible walls in music). Other points of praise for this album are its seemingly silent, yet incredibly effective bass lines, the variety of the music, and its above average production. The production really makes this album shine, actually. Like a good producer should, the producer here suppresses the weaker points of the album and drives home the stronger ones. At the same time, the producer makes effective use of Lavigne's natural voice, recording it raw most of the time (I'm praying there's no autotune). There are really only a few instances when the vocals feel influenced by studio trickery. Her breathing is masterfully left in the mix and seems to be a major feature much of the time. Of course, I think this technique has been a trend in pop music, especially for the more heartfelt songs, but it nevertheless makes Avril Lavigne sound better than she would otherwise. What's more, her recorded acoustic guitar tone is excellent (for this, Lavigne should be given more credit than her producer should). I guess one of the morals of this story is that having a record company pump a seemingly endless supply of money into the production of an album really isn't that bad if you're the artist. The only negatives about the musical side of this album are the cheap, tacky chorus lines and the made-for-dance-clubs techno song, "Hello Kitty." Of course, these negatives, along with the use of programmed instruments, may be enough to negate the positives I mentioned, but this album is worth giving a listen because it is ahead (if only slightly) of the mainstream pop of Katy Perry and Miley Cyrus.

Lyrics — 6
OK, I'll admit it; Avril Lavigne has a great voice. But so does most everyone else in pop music. I guess it's easy enough to throw all pop singers into the same package and prematurely label their vocals uncreative and unoriginal. Nevertheless, I believe that pop singers can be held to a better standard. From that end, Avril Lavigne does not impress. While all of her melodies are catchy, almost all of them I could easily relate to a song that has previously been made famous. While this album has variety (she raps a bit), some may view that as a moot point if none of the variety is novel. Lyrically, this album relies primarily on the annoyingly old pop music subject of breaking up with boyfriends. Like her husband, Avril Lavigne attempts to stretch boundaries by cursing. I won't say the album is rife with cursing, but I will say that once that barrier is broken, she might as well use it to its full effectiveness. I think that her husband in Nickelback has found the most effective balance of cursing in his lyrics and she, in my opinion, has not found her perfect equilibrium yet. Personally, I think this album could be just as successful without the cursing. But, if she feels that she needs to a bit raunchy to gain an audience, she might as well go balls to the wall.

Overall Impression — 8
Once you free yourself of the mentality that pop music equals poison in all circumstances, it's easy to see that this album is a winner for the most part. Looking past some of the more annoying, pop-induced facets of this album, this album is still a fun listen that exhibits moments of musicianship at the moments when it is most needed. The best songs of the album are "Bad Girl" and "Sipping on Sunshine." And she does a kicka-s version of "Bad Reputation," just saying.

55 comments sorted by best / new / date

    N-D
    And once again - these videos are just obvious commercials for Sony products - "Let Me Go" advertising Sony tablet, and "Rock N Roll" - Xperia phone. I really dislike this annoying advertising with logos in almost every frame... "Oh, my new Sony phone is ringing " - brrrrr...
    Skullivan
    "What the Hell" from her last album also had immense Sony product placement in the music video. In fact, it cuts to like three different Sony products before the song actually starts.
    vppark2
    Total shite.
    Skyvalve2012
    Personally rather see Zedd's Clarity on the review page...
    Cavalcade
    You know that'll never happen on a guitar site. Besides, Feed Me just won EDM anyway.
    UncleBluck
    Oh right....now I remember....the Canadian...."PUNK" rocker.....
    Cavalcade
    That has nothing to do with anything either of us just said. If you replied to me because you're trying to get your comment to the top of this shitheap, at least say something original. You're not as clever as you think you are.
    Animadantis
    I'm actually amazed at how many good albums get overlooked on this site and somehow this garbage gets top spot? I mean c'mon who are you f**kin kidding really?
    MattFrancis
    Looking at the music reviews box on the home page right now here are 5 out of the 8 reviews up there.... Avril Lavigne Katy Perry Linkin Park Susan (FUCKING!) Boyle and Eminem..... I dont really have a problem with Eminem but considering the amount of good music out there UG really knows how to pick the shite bits!
    Animadantis
    I know right! I certainly have no problem with Eminem or LP - at least they write/produce the base of their material. It would be great to see some bands that are a little less known and could use the review recognition; Instead of this pop drivel which everyone has clearly had enough of. They clog enough of the main media, why such places as this? I'm sure I'll get blasted for not being open-minded enough but really there is much better music out there AND even in the vein of pop music ie. Capsule/Chromeo/etc
    keefsy
    ****... thats pretty hectic aye... and LP is a dubstep remix CD.... damn
    swave75
    No problem with Eminem? But yet you guys have a problem with the other pop acts? Huh?
    MattFrancis
    Older Eminem records are alright. I'd certainly rather listen to that than Susan Boyle or Avril Lavigne.....
    purplexing
    I'm sorry this can't be super technical prog experimental death metal project vol 56.
    NightwishAngel
    I got this album yesterday and I gotta be honest, this is a pretty good album (with the exception of the song Hello Kitty, which sounds too much like Kesha). Overall, not a bad album. Better than most of the crap played on radio nowadays.
    Divinephyton
    I love how UG team chooses to ignore fans pleas and instead fill up two paragraphs defending this review instead of other more newsworthy ones and then calling [i]us trolls. [u]We aren't . A lot of us are voicing the legit opinion that this kind of stuff doesn't really belong here. Especially not special feature them either. And I say power to the people.You guys could do so much for up and coming artists who need that little extra, but instead waste your time on clowns like Lavigne, Perry and Cyrus who just need to fart to get attention.
    Jemuzu
    "I'm praying there is no autotune", well, listen again, there's quite a layer of effects for a "raw" voice recording... Oh, and what the heck is the video for Rock N' Roll supposed to be about? An hommage to Star Wars, Tank Girl, Gun's N' Roses (circa November Rain) and a bunch of stuff I didn't recognize? Or just no inspiration, so let's reuse stuff young people won't know?
    Kameliasz
    Well, guys, you really have to understand, that in pop standards this album is really good. You can't compare 7.3 given to this album to f.e. a metal album which got 7.3, because they are measured in very different category. And when you sepeak of "omgz fux dat shiet dat iz ultimateGUITAR" - there's hella lot guitars inside the album. Its release even coincides with the premiere of new Avril's signature Fender acoustic. (inb4 "omgz fux dat shiet she doesnt dezurvhh a sig Fenduhrrr") Overally, it's no Under My Skin, and I really didn't expect the s/t to be what I'd find a perfect Avril's album (The Best Damn Thing-esque without awfully cheesy singles), but still it's quite fine to give it a listen if you're not a closed-minded prick.
    badfish_lewis
    Ooooh a featured review. Please explain what she's done to deserve a featured review over so many other artists that ug guitar players actually care about?
    shawnkenneth
    I've never been turned on and turned off at the same time before by a song. One minute Avril's kissing a girl and the next she's cutting the head off of a bear shark.. I ľ mean, what in heaven's name is a bear shark, anyway ??
    damillion
    How did this shit get an 8? I mean 8 should be reserved for really notable albums of the year. It might be better than the worst radio music out there, but that's not really saying much, is it?
    Coooorey
    I am not a fan of this music but I support it by all means. If Avril Lavigne is the girliest pop rock chick ever, it is still better than this Miley Cyrus bullshit. If her targeted audience is teenage girls then at least she's influencing them towards rock and roll and not this trashy electro pop shit.
    Senor_Homme
    You know, man, you can fap to her pics without liking her music tbh "Bad Girl" gave me some Yeah Yeah Yeahs vibes, I liked that track
    miserybusiness1
    Answer to some general comments:"WHY DOES THIS GET A REVIEW BEFORE *INSERTNAMEOFRANDOMOBSCUREMETALBAND*" Well, go ahead and review it. I like Necrophagist, but I understand Avril's new album is more relevant to the world, hence it's more likely to be reviewed in most websites.I understand this album is not for everyone, specifically hairy and trv3 METUHL fans, but I'm sure you would complain and go bersek when every non-metal fan qualifies your favorite bands as total shit. Well, bad news for you, your are just like them... Oh, and the album is a solid pop album, a nice step forward after the mediocre previous effort.
    Divinephyton
    Metal hasn't even been mentioned, but I guess they make acceptable targets right?. There's all kinds of genres with lesser known bands that are more talented, more interesting and in every aspect way more relevant to the world. Especially in the musical area, considering this is ultimateGUITAR and not ultimatePOPPRINCESS.It's not about elitism. It's about getting that little piece of the attention pie for more deserving artists who try to make it from their bedroom or garage-gigs to the big league when 'artists' like these hog up everything because they've got big money, a big label and whole media team behind them manufacturing interest and shoveling this trite every-which way down everybodies neck.
    Nightmare4560
    We are all entitled to our own opinions, but i think this album is pretty good. I noticed someone above me said that Rock N Roll was awful.. in my opinion, best song on the album. If my views on this are not accepted by everyone on here.. well tbh, i really don't give a damn. Again, we are entitled to our own opinions.. it just so happens that mine is different to yours.
    iommi600
    "Let Me Go" sounds just like a Nickelback song. Way to go, Chad Kroeger. Now, "Rock N' Roll"... boy, that was terrible.
    Yooritzz
    Avril Lavigne used to be cool and make good music. This album i complete horse shit.
    N-D
    This is personal opinion of UG author - Ultimate Guitar DON'T post paid reviews - and this is no exception.
    Troupy47
    This is a more in-depth review than Alter Bridge..... WHAT THE FUCK PEOPLE!?
    N-D
    There is a couple of different UG authors, and each one has his own writing style - check out name of the reviewer at the bottom of the review.
    mariotyler
    How dare she mimic Slash's iconic solo moment in November Rain! And then on top of that, mime the f***ing guitar solo! That Rock n Roll song and video is a disgrace..
    travislausch
    "On the off chance that you have not heard of Avril Lavigne, you should be warned that she can easily be thrown in with the Katy Perrys and Miley Cyruses of the world." It never used to be that way. Sure, she was a pop darling to begin with, but at least there was a rock element. Real drums, bass, guitar, fewer synths and programmed parts. I'm even willing to bet some of her early music wasn't nearly as auto-tuned to oblivion as anything Katy Perry released. But now, I had the chance to listen to a few songs and pretty much the only authentic sounding instrument is the acoustic guitar, which doesn't even really sound that great in the mix. Good, but hardly great. "I guess one of the morals of this story is that having a record company pump a seemingly endless supply of money into the production of an album really isn't that bad if you're the artist." She only really co-writes on most of it (only one song has her as a sole writing credit) so ehn... she's not really the artist here. I'd say that's more Chad Kroeger. One thing that bothers me a little is the mentioning of Radiohead by her and other pop stars nowadays. As ****ing if Avril ever actually listened to that stuff.
    pajo777
    praying that there's no auto tune? Who the hell writes this, Helen Keller?
    JB95
    It's not that terrible, but I'm not going protect the album because of the cancerous product placement.