“HOLY FVCK” had me saying “holy f*ck” after every song.
I have been a huge Demi Lovato fan ever since I was a kid. I will remain one of their biggest fans after this newest album. While it’s definitely a new direction, it feels more than natural for Lovato to bring themselves into the hard rock genre. Their start as a pop-rock Disney star with their album “Don’t Forget” showed off their talents as a rockstar. The release of “HOLY FVCK” has only built on their rockstar image.
Each song is different while still carrying the theme of the album: pain. Lovato’s vocals carry such intense emotion that it is impossible to escape their cathartic lyrics. There are a few skippable tracks; with 16 songs, they can’t all be perfect. But many of the songs were in the running for my favorite tune on the album.
Lovato turned on their sexy voice for the opening verse on “FREAK (feat. Yungblud).” The driving bass line set the expectations high for the remaining 15 tracks. The breakdown toward the end foreshadowed the content of the album as they sang, “Came for the trauma / Stayed for the drama.”
“SKIN OF MY TEETH” is one of my definitive skips off this album. It is a little too close for comfort to “Celebrity Skin” by Hole. This song kickstarts a small sequence of skips, with “SUBSTANCE,” ironically, lacking its namesake.
I love electronic metal music, so I had insanely high expectations when “EAT ME (feat. Royal & The Serpent)” came on. This is an incredible song about gender presentation and identity while truly showcasing the fantastic features of both Lovato’s and Royal’s voices.
Title track “HOLY FVCK” is skippable while “29” is not. “29” is currently having its well-deserved moment on TikTok for dragging Wilmer Valderrama since he started dating Lovato when they were 17, and he was, horrifically, 29. The pain in Lovato’s voice is palpable and arguably what makes the song as good as it is. The lyrics snap you awake and force you to listen.
“HAPPY ENDING,” a somber song about drug addiction, is devastating. Lovato asks, “Am I going to die trying to find my happy ending?” It’s honest, which makes the theme that much more heartbreaking.
The next five tracks are what I’d like to call the “horny Demi featuring religious trauma” section. “HEAVEN” is a heavy song about masturbation, an essential song for any metal adjacent album. “CITY OF ANGELS” is laughable purely because of the lyrics “You call me they but I’m still daddy’s girl.”
“BONES,” “WASTED” and “COME TOGETHER” blend together a little bit, but they do all have incredible guitar sections. “WASTED” sounds a bit like “I’ve Got All This Ringing In My Ears But None On My Fingers” by Fall Out Boy.
“DEAD FRIENDS” would have been one of my favorite songs if I was still in my twenty one pilots phase. The whole idea of losing friends either because they died or you drove them away is inherently depressing. “HELP ME (feat. Dead Sara)” and “FEED” are solid songs but there aren’t many memorable parts to them.
The album closes out with a bang with “4 EVER 4 ME.” I genuinely said “awwww” out loud several times during this song because it is such a cute love song. It feels like what Lovato and Joe Jonas should have sang at the end of “Camp Rock.” I have already added it to my cheesy love songs playlist.
Overall, this album was an incredible comeback for Lovato. It solidified them as more than a pop-rock artist and really showcased their vocals, which have only gotten better over the years. I was pleasantly surprised by this album.