LØLØ talks pop-punk, Taylor Swift ahead of EP release

Photo of LØLØ at her concert
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Throughout her youth, LØLØ frequently sported a white tank top and preppy tie, performing a loosely choreographed routine to Avril Lavigne’s “Sk8er Boi.” Almost two decades later, she continues to channel her inner pop-punk princess and approaches the musical stylings of the ‘90s and early 2000s with a modern flair. 

Toronto-based singer-songwriter LØLØ presently spends her days touring with veteran bands New Found Glory and Less Than Jake as part of the Pop Punk’s Still Not Dead Tour. She may be relatively new to the scene, but her recent releases live up to the tour’s namesake — she serves as a conduit through which pop-punk is revitalized.

“I guess it’s like this music has never died, especially for New Found Glory and Less Than Jake. Because everything’s coming back now, I mean these guys started it kind of, you know?” LØLØ said in an interview with The Daily Californian. “I mean, these guys have been doing it for 20 years, and it’s still kicking. People still want to hear this music.”

Being on tour has given LØLØ the opportunity to learn from some of pop-punk’s greats, whether she’s seeing them backstage, talking to them in her dressing room or performing alongside them. Every night, New Found Glory brings her up on stage to perform “Vicious Love,” a track originally recorded with Paramore’s Hayley Williams. 

Among her other influences, LØLØ cites Green Day, The Smashing Pumpkins, Weezer and (of course) Avril Lavigne. She frequently refers to these pop-rock fixtures when recording in the studio or planning her next music video, and she pulls their work into the present day with creativity and wit. 

“In my music video for my song ‘Hate U,’ we give an homage to the ‘Girlfriend’ video,” LØLØ said. “I actually play myself, and then I play myself like this blonde bitch because that’s what Avril Lavigne does. So we literally took that from that. We kinda made it our own thing.”

That is not to say LØLØ does not have her finger on the pulse of Gen-Z pop culture. She has had her fair share of trying to learn TikTok dances and attempting to hop on emerging trends. Earlier this year, she gained quite a bit of attention for her alternative version of Taylor Swift’s “Betty,” written from the perspective of the titular character.

“When I heard ‘Betty,’ I thought it was just the coolest thing that Taylor Swift had written songs from three different perspectives with ‘Betty’ and ‘August’ and ‘Cardigan,’ ” LØLØ said. “And in the song ‘Betty,’ I actually misheard the lyric. I actually thought it was ‘The worst thing that I ever did is fall in love with you.’ … And then I was like, wait, I should write that side of it because I was honestly just dying to know what happened to Betty. Does she take (James) back?”

While LØLØ’s recent releases bleed pop-rock, she cites Swift as another major influence — particularly for her quirky, autobiographical lyricism. The up-and-coming artist synthesizes a perfect balance between the honest lyricism of Swift and the grungy musicality of Lavigne — and the product is unequivocally LØLØ. 

“I couldn’t keep a plant alive even if I tried to,” LØLØ sings in the opening of her single, “Death Wish,” released earlier this year. According to LØLØ, this very humorous, very relatable lyric came to her after she was dumped on April Fool’s Day and her grandmother brought her a plant. 

“(My grandmother) was like, ‘Now that you don’t have a boyfriend to take care of, I brought you a plant,’ ” LØLØ recalled. “It died like a week in and I was like what the f—. I just remember thinking, wow, I’m such a disaster I can’t even take care of this plant, let alone my life.”

Two years later, this moment gave birth to “Death Wish,” a brutally honest song about killing everything she loves. Whether it be a plant, a goldfish or a relationship, everything seems predestined to untimely death. “Those three little words may as well be R.I.P,” LØLØ sings.

In LØLØ’s upcoming EP Overkill, which is set to be released in November, audiences can expect to hear songs like “Death Wish,” as well as the singles “Die Without U” and “Lonely and Pathetic.” Similar to that in her earlier work, she will continue to openly share personal anecdotes and relationship qualms; yet, Overkill sees her digging further into the pop-rock influences that raised her.

 “In terms of music, it’s definitely a lot more aggressive,” LØLØ said. “Definitely goes harder. And I guess it’s just more mature, in a way, as I grew up.”

LØLØ may kill everything she loves, but pop-punk stands as a special exception. The genre is far from dead — rather than killing it, LØLØ continuously lends it new life.

Contact Lauren Harvey at [email protected].