SZA’s “CTRL” Review

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Kathryn Fitzgerald, Contributor

In 2017, the artist SZA, Solána Rowe, released an album called “CTRL.”  It features other artists such as Travis Scott and Kendrick Lamar. The album contains 14 songs ranging from 3-4 minutes long each. 

“CTRL” has been nominated for 4 Grammy awards for the Best New Artist category. This album was a very important album for SZA because she was raised in New Jersey and trained to be a gymnast. She referred to herself as being “one of the few black girls in the room.”

Before the release of “CTRL,” SZA tweeted “I actually quitreferring to her music career. She then deleted it, but that didn’t stop the users of Twitter from screenshotting and sharing it. She then released the album “CTRL.” She used this name to subtly hint at the fact she has taken back control of her music career. 

At the beginning and the end of the album, you can hear Rowe talking to her mother. My mom has spent her whole life living in openness and acceptance and I really never understood,” Rowe said in a “Vulture” interview. In the article, it talked about how Rowe believed that the advice that black moms give to their daughters is a special kind of inheritance. 

One of my personal favorite songs on the album is “Anything.” This song is sampled from Donna Summers’s hit “Spring Reprise.”  In the song, SZA sings the lyrics “down for the ride,” which references some sort of fling relationship but then soon after sings “do you even know I’m alive” questioning if what they have is legitimate. 

“CTRL” is one of those albums that you won’t get bored of hearing the songs over and over again. In my opinion, it’s one of those “comfort” albums. The songs are ones that you can relate to in some sort of way. This album, I feel, is more turned towards women, not in a necessarily bad way. It’s good that women can have something to turn towards for comfort and something to relate to. I would 10/10 recommend this album.