Album Review: SZA’s Sophomore Album S.O.S. is Finally Here– And it was Worth the Wait.

Over half a decade ago, SZA burst onto the music scene with her smash-hit debut album Ctrl, leaving us wishing we were “Normal Girls” and wondering “why IS it so hard to accept the party is over”? The album has since proved itself to be a timeless R&B classic, seeing as it has never left the Billboard 200 since its original release back in 2017. Without a doubt, it is a piece of work that has continued to grow and resonate with its listeners over the years. After the release of Ctrl we have seen SZA’s fan base grow into a loyal, cult following. There has been plenty of speculation about a new album this past year but finally, on December 3, after a stellar performance of her newest single “Shirt” on NBC’s Saturday Night Live, the release date was officially revealed.

Two months after release, S.O.S. has remained at the top of the charts. It has spent eight of its nine weeks at number one, tying with Taylor Swift’s 2020 album, Folklore. According to The New York Times, it’s garnered over 1.7 billion streams in the United States alone. It is clear to see why. SZA effortlessly jumps from one genre to another, with tracks like “Nobody Gets Me” and “F2F” which both experiment with country and rock. She recruits help from artists like Phoebe Bridgers, who is best known for her indie folk music, on the fan-favorite track “Ghost in the Machine”. We also see another appearance from Travis Scott, who was previously featured on SZA’s Ctrl, for “Open Arms”.

S.O.S. is a refreshing listen for everyone. Not just those who have long awaited the release for 5 years, but also those who have just discovered the wonderful mind of SZA. With her timeless songwriting and catchy melodies, it’s clear to see why. She has officially solidified herself as a beloved artist who appeals to people from every corner of the world.

Elena Fry-Hernandez – Contributing Writer

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