Soft popstar, singer-songwriter and Olivia Rodrigo’s best friend Conan Gray released his sophomore album Superache on June 24.
The Texas native was first popular on YouTube before his songs “Maniac” and “Heather” became breakout hits. In 2018, Gray released room tours, daily vlogs and song covers, all adorned in cover art the singer sketched himself. Eventually, he began to release original music on his channel, including successful releases early in his career like “Grow” and “Idle Town”.
Sunset Season EP and his debut album Kid Krow, filled with sad and soft melodic tracks, quickly transformed Gray into a rising popstar. Today, Gray boasts over 20 million monthly Spotify listeners.
Track by track, here’s our Superache review.
“Movies” confirms that one of Gray’s favorite topics is unrequited love. Is this a heartbreak album? We shall see.
Despite being an overall upbeat song (especially the bridge), “People Watching” is a personal look into Gray’s emotions. At first, he talks about the common experience of people-watching and daydreaming about strangers’ potential lives. However, he continues to pour out his emotions, talking about reoccurring feelings of being avoidant and unlovable. This song feels relatable because it ultimately describes the jealousy that we sometimes experience from seeing others be seemingly successful, while we may be struggling to grow and/or find love.
“Disaster” is the most upbeat song on the album. “This could be a disaster” sounds serious, but Gray seems ready to jump into the relationship at full speed. The voice effects on the chorus and at the beginning add a special touch. You can watch the first live performance of “Disaster” below:
Following the upbeat lead of “Disaster”, “Best Friend” brings a nice, lighthearted touch to the album and is about the insignificant, yet best parts of a friendship.
Leave a comment if you’ve bawled to this song. “Astronomy” is an acoustic heartbreaker about two people who have grown apart and no longer fit the same in each other’s lives. Gray previously shared in a Samsung Music Galaxy Thursday video that the song is about an old friendship. Despite how deeply depressing this song is, there is comfort in how it once again describes a universal experience, and over 100 million Spotify streams illustrates its popularity.
In “Yours”, Gray details the utter frustration with making the wrong choice to sacrifice himself for another person, yet still not feeling like enough. It’s one of the saddest songs on the album, but doesn’t compete with “Astronomy”.
Although it’s on the shorter side, aptly-named “Jigsaw” is another favorite. The jigsaw metaphor makes this song more story-like and less basic; Gray describes wanting to piece together the best parts of himself and loosing touch with being completely himself. The guitar adds to the angsty theme of the track.
“Family Line” is earning the popularity it deserves, already taking over TikTok. It’s probably Gray’s most personal and heartfelt song from his whole discography, especially the bridge:
“All that I did to try to undo it /
All of my pain and all your excuses /
I was a kid, but I wasn’t clueless /
(Someone who loves you wouldn’t do this) /
All of my past, I tried to erase it /
But now I see, would I even change it? /
Might share a face and share a last name but /
(We are not the same, same)”
“Summer Child” is another meaningful one. In contrast to previous songs, Gray is comforting another person (or possibly speaking to himself) about embracing their emotions.
“Footnote” is another about acceptance, and another strong metaphor. This song differs a bit from the other sad songs, as he is not hopeless, but ready to take a chance whenever his crush is ready.
“Memories” is upbeat and nostalgic. Released as one of the first singles on the album, the song has earned over 41 million streams.
Overall rating: 7/10.
Superache seems like a heartbreak album. Gray knows how to express his sadness, and those tracks tended to be our favorite. Upbeat tracks like “Disaster” were also strong and had hit-worthy potential. However, some tracks seemed basic and fell flat due to overstated themes and no unique sound. Overall, Gray has definitely grown from his debut album.
You can stream Superache on all platforms here.
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