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Izzy S.O delivers poignant reminiscence on “I Swear I Made You Up”

08 March 2024, 11:00 | Written by Emily Savage

London-based Izzy S.O’s latest track sees her blend emotional literacy with tender, guitar-laden production in navigating heartache.

Since the arrival of her debut single less than two years ago, Izzy S.O has established herself as an innovative rising voice. Blending elements of ‘90s rock with hazy dream pop, the West Midlands-born artist’s fusion of eclectic influences serves as a guiding thread throughout her work. While her initial EP Can You Hear Me set an early promise of things to come, last year’s project Silly Me secured her status as one to watch. Now back with her second offering since the body of work – the momentum is only set to continue.

Navigating feelings of ambivalence, doubt, and despair, the track offers an endearingly candid take on post-breakup emotions. “‘I Swear I Made You Up’ was inspired by one real moment when I met up with someone I once loved and we were acting like strangers. It was a weirdly polite conversation, where we both pretended to be fine like we had put these walls up to protect ourselves,” Izzy explains.

While previous work has found catharsis through fiery riffs and crunching percussion, with comparisons (understandably) being drawn to Avril Lavigne, the current single leans into an intentionally delicate side to her artistry. Placing Izzy’s untethered vocals at the centre, it opts for a more tender sound than most of her discography, but equally one that holds just as much impact.

Backed by minimalist production, it’s a decidedly raw offering. Crooning guitars and rhythmic drumbeats ruminate gently, allowing each line to hit with a powerful transparency. “You can bury us, if that’s who you are / It’s not who I thought you’d be.” she gut-wrenchingly lays out. Intertwining touches of nostalgia amongst the melancholy, the strength in Izzy’s lyrical abilities shines through, as she poetically details inner turmoil.

Whether it’s through rebellious heartbreak anthems or pensive ballads, Izzy’s ability to capture the tumultuous experience of coming-of-age gives her work its prevailing universal resonance. Tying together the ever-relevant themes of mental health, self-discovery, love, and loss, each release provides a refreshing dose of Gen Z candour. Combined with diverse instrumental textures, there’s an alluring juxtaposition between grappling subject matter and an immersive sense of escapism.

Though she still may be at the beginning of her career, Izzy has already built the foundations of an impressive music trajectory. And based off her recent offerings, it’s only a matter of time before she’s captivating a much wider audience.

"I Swear I Made You Up" is out now. Find Izzy S.O on Instagram.

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