Just three months after the release of his debut album, I Met You When I Was 18, Lauv returns with a catchy new single. “Superhero,” released on Thursday, returns to his signature simplistic composition and melodic vocals. Similarly to many of his previous releases, the track is a sweet love song about loss and regret—all of which is offset by the upbeat tune of the track. The song opens with a repetitive guitar riff accompanied by intermittent piano chords, but the instrumentals aren’t the focal point of the track— the vocals steal the show on this front. The climax of the song hits after a beat-driven breakdown where the soundscape is suddenly overwhelmed by a wall of instrumentals: piano, guitar, drums, cymbals, and even synths. The moment this hits feels like a cathartic release of emotion—the moment where his seemingly cheery songwriting suddenly falls into place with his distraught lyrics.
“Superhero” succeeds is in its listenability: Lauv’s quick rise to fame is largely a result of his simplistic style, which appeals to listeners of virtually any genre. However, where the track falls short is in its ability to stand apart from the rest of his music: the trajectory of this track feels familiar to that of “Never Not.” With such a signature sound, returning to a formulaic style may eventually result in Lauv’s appeal running dry. Despite this familiarity, overall “Superhero” is well worth an add to end of summer playlists for fans of pop, chillwave electronic, and even singer/songwriter tunes.