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‘You Stupid Bitch’ Review: Instrumentally Impressive, Lyrically Lacking

Cover of  "You Stupid Bitch" by girl in red
Cover of "You Stupid Bitch" by girl in red By Courtesy of girl in red / world in red / AWAL
By Nina M. Foster, Crimson Staff Writer

Despite its bold title, girl in red’s latest single “You Stupid Bitch” lacks the innovative songwriting that fans have come to know and love. This is the second single to be released from her upcoming debut album “if i could make it go quiet,” which Ulven describes as a “banger album.” This description certainly matches the artist’s new, hard-hitting sound that deviates from the pared-down instrumentals of her prior work and leans into electric guitar along with more aggressive vocals. Upbeat percussion makes “You Stupid Bitch” a good song for dancing and pretending that you’re the main character in a coming-of-age indie film. But when the well-rounded accompaniment is set aside, the lyrics fall short.

Ulven’s songwriting normally delivers on brilliant storytelling. She writes openly about her experiences with mental health struggles and queer romance, utilizing a visual and sensual language that makes personal moments accessible to any listener. Her lyrics are often very repetitive, with short verses and multiple rounds of longer choruses, but the cleverness of her writing makes up for any lack of variety.

“You Stupid Bitch” maintains Ulven’s trademark vulnerability by expressing a stormy internal dialogue, but it lacks creativity. The song consists primarily of the repeated line “You stupid bitch, can’t you see the perfect one for you is me?” with little descriptive language. In a world overflowing with songs about unrequited love, one must be truly inventive to stand out among the rest. Unfortunately, the lyrics of “You Stupid Bitch” don’t quite make the cut. The song is essentially an angstier version of Taylor Swift’s “You Belong With Me,” echoing the frustration of watching someone you love struggle through relationships when you know that you’d be the perfect option.

Without Ulven’s brave — and successful — departure from her bedroom pop roots, the impact of this song would be lost. Incorporating heavier instrumentation brings her into the realm of rock, establishing the angry tone that underlies her vocals. “You Stupid Bitch” is emblematic of significant growth in her understanding of instrumental composition, but the same cannot be said about the single’s lackluster lyrics.

— Staff writer Nina M. Foster can be reached at nina.foster@thecrimson.com.

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