Alex O’Connor, known famously as Rex Orange County has just released his much-anticipated 4th album, ‘WHO CARES?‘, but it is not the sorrowful breakup album most fans were expecting. Instead, Rex focuses on healing and self-reflection through enjoyable melodies.
Listen to ‘WHO CARES?‘ here: https://open.spotify.com/album/2yI4m5Yu2tl8v0It5P9WVz?si=Fkq2xIXtTTSRxSfAjVZuzQ
It feels like Rex has perfected his own sound, dominating the genre of bedroom indie pop. Similar artists include: Easy Life, Wallows and Mac DeMarco.
The short but sweet album of only 35 minutes is the perfect alternative summer album. It presents difficult themes such as stress, lack of motivation, depression and not fitting in, that noticeably contrasts his amiable soothing style. This contrast is what allows listeners a form of escapism as all songs have a nostalgic comforting feel, paired with the relatability of the heartfelt lyrics.
However, despite personally loving most the tracks, I can understand why fans are confused or in some cases disappointed. In comparison to his last album ‘Pony’, the new album lacks the same depth and variety of tracks.
As although Rex is famous for his catchy jazzy pop hits, his real fans know he makes some of the best sad songs in modern music and after his breakup fans expected at least a few tear-jerking ballads they could relate to. However, it seems like the singer songwriter is in a happier state of mind now, so it seems wrong to wish for sad songs for my own gain.
The albums simplicity and Alex’s charmingly awkward persona makes it a very enjoyable listen, and I am confident that it will only get better with every listen. However, there is definitely some stand out songs.
- Firstly, one of the singles ‘AMAZING’ as it is annoyingly catchy! I have found myself adding it to my Spotify queue and singing it randomly in the kitchen way too many times to be ignored.
- Next, ‘OPEN A WINDOW’ featuring Tyler the Creator as it has a nostalgic almost 80’s vibe paired with modern lyrics. The fact Tyler is the only collaboration song feels oddly wholesome as he was the artist that helped Rex rise to fame in 2017 when Tyler featured him on the now platinum album ‘Flower Boy’ – so it feels like a full circle moment in their friendship.
- ‘SHOOT ME DOWN’ is already a personal favourite of mine as it weirdly feels like a Bond theme song but in the best way possible.
(Posted:13th of March)