Rina Sawayama – Hold The Girl

‘Rina Sawayama sends out a powerful message that needs to be heard. Let’s embrace self-love.’

Rina Sawayama is here with her latest single “Hold the girl”, an empowering song in which she talks to her younger self. This is the third preview of her upcoming album of the same name, which is set to be released on 16th September. 

At the height of the pandemic, the Japanese-British artist became the new pop sensation. She was no stranger to the music industry; she had put out some singles and an EP. But it wasn’t until her debut album when she got bigger. Sawayama was met with critical acclaim and pop fans appreciated its freshness. This project showed her eclecticism, and her ability to blend different genres successfully. 

While trying to keep a fun tone, now her sophomore album will lean towards a more personal songwriting style, and probably a more mainstream sound, as this new track attests. 

The motorbike sound that kicks off the action in “Hold the girl” lets us foresee that this is not going to be the classic ballad, but a road to enjoy diverse landscapes. The verses, carried by an acoustic guitar, settle into a powerful slick chorus that slowly brings in electronic beats and finally collapses into vocal chops. Jumping between key changes, the song keeps the listener’s attention from start to end, and still holds one last surprise: a chorus. 

Building a bridge with her past version, Rina Sawayama reflects on self-confidence and recognises the importance of accepting every aspect of herself, as she understands that life is a journey and she’s made of her strengths and weaknesses, her highs and lows – hence, the use of a speech of kindness. 

As much as this is an introspective song, it’s still very catchy as well, and there’s no doubt that radio stations are going to love it. However, it gives off strong Eurovision vibes, which is something that could be sacrificing her particular universe for the sake of reaching a broader audience. Even so, she’s sending out a powerful message that needs to be heard. Let’s embrace self-love!

Words: Lorena Basallote

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