Before Poppy was the musician that she is today, most knew her as a YouTube sensation who gained popularity for her cryptic videos. “I Disagree,” released in January 2020, was a large departure from Poppy’s previous work, which was mostly pop. “I Disagree” does a lot of genre-blending, but the biggest shock of the album to Poppy’s fans was the heavy metal influence that reverberated through the album.
Poppy’s most recent album prior to the release of “I Disagree” was “Am I A Girl?,” which offered hints of the soon-to-come metal genre that Poppy would embrace in its last two tracks, “Play Destroy,” featuring Grimes, and “X.”
I will admit that I am a huge fan of this album and have probably listened to it enough to memorize every beat and syllable spoken throughout it.
Its first track, titled “Concrete,” instantly introduces the sort of genre-mixing Poppy will go on to ace through the rest of the album. It’s not just genre-ambiguous, but actually switches back and forth between heavy metal (complete with guitar shredding and even some screaming) and bubblegum pop.
“Anything Like Me” contains lyricism that reinforces Poppy’s purpose in making this album–
Sorry for what I’ve become“Anything Like Me” – Poppy
Because I’m becoming someone
She goes on in this song to talk about a girl who seems to represent the things that Poppy is supposed to be, but doesn’t wish to be.
I feel her heart beating in me“Anything Like Me” – Poppy
Get her out of me
Poppy works throughout the album to express the idea that conformity is a disease. In “BLOODMONEY,” she asks–
What do you believe when everyone is watching?“BLOODMONEY” – Poppy
And in “Fill The Crown,” she says,
You can be anyone you want to be
You can be free, you can be free“Fill The Crown” – Poppy
Poppy is clearly expressing her desire for individuality, likely in response to the pressures she felt around making music in an industry and working with producers who executed excessive control over her work.
Poppy’s evolution does not seem to be finished yet. From electronic pop in her first album “Poppy.Computer” to the metal in “I Disagree,” and even to the alt-rock/indie vibes of her most recent album, “Flux,” Poppy seems to be innovating in every area she can, not just with her music, but with her character and stage presence as well.