Flux By Poppy album review by Katie Tymochenko for Northern Transmissions

Sumerian Records

9

Poppy

Flux

The brilliant thing about not abiding by the rules is the lack of expectation a person can set forth on their future. At just 26 years of age, Poppy – the YouTuber turned heavy metal attraction- turned the industry upside down when she became the first solo female artist to be nominated for Best Metal Performance at the 2021 Grammy Awards. Her previous artistic endeavours didn’t stop her from completely shape shifting into the artist she is today, which will be nothing like what she’ll be tomorrow.

She’s a musical chameleon and her new album Flux is representative of just that. Flux sees Poppy continue to embrace her love of hard rock, punk, and heavy metal but continues to sprinkle the sounds of day-dreaming pop music. On paper it sounds like a beautiful disaster and that’s exactly what makes it work.

“Flux” not only serves as the album’s title track but opens the new record on a staggering high. The song sets the tone for the album by showcasing Poppy’s dynamic and inventive songwriting style through a series of unconventional and industrial sounds. What starts out as a melodic pop/rock song, quickly turns into something terrifyingly loud. It’s chaotic, but beautiful in knowing that each of Poppy’s sonic decisions seem to be made with intent and creative purpose. If you weren’t a fan of Poppy before, after “Flux” you will be.

Lyrically, she’s blunt throughout the album but conveys her powerful messaging in the simplest of terms. On “Lessen The Damage” another intense bridge finds Poppy screaming “Leave her, don’t touch her!” whereas the melancholic “Bloom” finds beauty, even within the darkest of metaphors. Whether she’s exploring surf-punk on “So Mean” or challenging herself to an intense ballad, Poppy continuously proves she can do it all.

The dynamics on the album don’t stop at the track listing but rather extend into the individual tracks themselves. On any given take, Poppy finds herself pushing her voice to the depths of heavy metal, then seconds later, back to innocent whispers of bubble gum pop. Her range is impressive, but like many in the metal community is often times overlooked by the industry as a whole. She has strategically positioned herself between rock and metal, while also tapping into genres of pop, punk, new wave and more. Her blueprint is that she has no blueprint and has entitled herself to full artistic freedom going forward.

Her shifting sound isn’t a bad thing. Her ability to alter musical styles while still creating a sonically cohesive body of work will only ensure a long lasting career for years to come. In the simplest of terms, Poppy is interesting. She refuses to be a carbon copy of anyone else and surrounds herself in an aura of suspense and uncertainty. Flux is her way of engaging fans, both old and new, into a spellbinding take on modern day heavy music.

Order Flux by Poppy HERE

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