After a week of silently teasing lyrics, today Avril Lavigne released her powerful comeback single, “Head Above Water,” off her upcoming sixth studio album. Avril’s announcement letter and previews promised a stunning, emotional song, but “Head Above Water” exceeds the already high expectations. Fans have already heard the first 30 seconds of the song. Now, we finally get to hear how it unfolds and builds.
“Head Above Water” begins with a driving piano, a brief introduction before Avril chimes in. She sings of finding strength even at your lowest point. Through stormy metaphors and biblical references, Avril reveals the depths of despair when you truly believe you may die. In fact, this is the first song Avril wrote for her upcoming album. She wrote it while in her mother’s arms, bedridden due to her Lyme Disease, and thought she might not make it. The lyrics are heart-wrenching, and yet they fiercely look for hope, too.
Avril’s vocals are stronger than ever before. She alternates between determined, powerfully-delivered lines and gentle vocals that reveal her fear and hopelessness. Musically, “Head Above Water” builds upon piano, drums, and strings, crescendoing into a powerful climax. While many predicted this would be a soft ballad, “Head Above Water” actually ends up delivering a lot of strength and energy. By the end we hear some of the rock elements that defined her earlier music. However, the choruses end with a surprisingly catchy and modern “drown, drown, drown” refrain. The song captures the elements that made fans fall in love with Avril all those years ago, yet it also shows her evolving into new territory.
Along with the stunning audio, “Head Above Water” also gets a lovely lyric video. It features oceanic vistas behind simple, scripted lyrics. Watch the lyric video for “Head Above Water” below:
You can stream “Head Above Water” on Spotify or download it from iTunes now. Avril already shot the music video last month; it will likely be released within the next week or so. We also have a live performance on Jimmy Kimmel to look forward to.
“Head Above Water,” which Avril co-wrote with Travis Clark (of We The Kings) and Stephan Moccio, is the lead single from her long-awaited sixth studio album. Her last record, 2013’s Avril Lavigne, came out a full five years ago. Lyme Disease prevented Avril from releasing music in the last few years, but it also inspired what’s turning out to be a strong comeback.
Avril’s new album is expected later this year, and it’s exciting to finally be this close to hearing Avril’s new record. With the passion and involvement she put into this music, we’re sure it will be her best yet. Enjoy “Head Above Water” as we await its music video and an official album announcement. You can also catch up on all that went into making this new album. Keep checking back here for all the latest Avril Lavigne music news. There will be plenty coming up in the next few months!