Review: Poppy - I Disagree
For those somehow unaware of her, Poppy is an internet sensation largely known for her bizarre YouTube persona which entails her behaving like artificial intelligence. This character rapidly gained attention and to this date has amounted to 2.5 million subscribers for Poppy on YouTube. With the large amount of buzz surrounding her, Poppy was quickly signed to Diplo's label Mad Decent on which she released two albums, 2017's "Poppy.Computer" and 2018's "Am I a Girl?". Poppy's first batch of projects can be categorized as bubblegum pop as well as art-pop with a strong sense of satire of the music industry. After toying with the implementation of pop metal through the release of several singles, Poppy now makes her first full dive into the genre with a massive amount of hype surrounding the freshly Sumerian Records signed artist.
The album kicks off with the track "Concrete" which starts off very sugary and sweet, reminiscent of Babymetal before shifted into a shockingly heavy deathcore style chug-fest. The track is an excellent table-setter and showcase of what Poppy is willing to explore on this record.The album continues a theme of satire for which Poppy has become known, a prime example of this is the title track "I Disagree", in which she takes aim at the music industry trying to tell her how her music should sound and that her experimentation of genre's could hurt her career. The track "Bloodymoney" sees Poppy embracing a very industrial and dub-step driven approach. The track feels very fitting for this artist with it's glitchy and sterile soundscape.
At about the halfway point of the album it becomes very evident that Poppy takes strong influence from industrial music, mainly artists such as Rammstein , Marilyn Manson, and Nine Inch Nails. This dark, brooding, industrial approach is most strongly showcased in tracks such as "Fill The Crown" , "Sit / Stay, and "Anything Like Me". The atmosphere these tracks create adds quite well to the polar opposite styles they grate against. Perhaps the most surprising track on the record is "Bite My Teeth", which sees Poppy make her first foray into screamed vocals, although brief, as well as a crushingly heavy breakdown that would fit perfectly in any deathcore song. The album also contains several softer tracks which allows Poppy to showcase her pillowy soft singing voice and creates a nice break and change of pace from the tracks which precede it. The final song "Don't Go Outside" has some surprisingly Black Sabbath-ish riffs, something certainly not expected from this album and it serves as a pleasant closer.
In conclusion, after approaching this album hesitantly and with moderate trepidation, I am pleasantly surprised. While one can fairly say that some of Poppy's persona and music comes off as weird just for the sake of it and gimmickry, don't a large majority of metal bands and artists in general partake in this? Where would the legendary Slipknot be without a healthy dose of well-executed marketing and gimmickry? Once you get passed the surface level, Poppy brings something very refreshing and new to music that can't be found anywhere else. "I Disagree" is an impressively diverse album with much to offer fans of numerous styles of music. If this is a style Poppy continues to pursue, there is a plethora of routes she can take this sound in next and that's quite exciting for a young artist. In all, "I Disagree" is a very worthwhile record for the open-minded music listener with a interesting mix of industrial, alternative metal, and bubblegum pop. Some of the must-listen standout tracks of the album include "Bit Your Teeth" , "Concrete", "Bloodymoney" . This record gets a 4 out of 5 stars from us and we strongly recommend giving it a chance.