Lauran Hibberd gets delightfully personal in new album

English singer-songwriter Lauran Hibberd released her sophomore album “girlfriend material” last Friday. This pop-punk album follows Hibberd’s first studio album “Garageband Superstar” released in 2022. “girlfriend material” transports listeners to the early 2000s with its nostalgic sound and hints of teenage angst.

A majority of the album consists of upbeat nostalgic songs that resemble those of popular artists like Avril Lavigne. At the same time, some of Hibberd’s songs like “i suck at grieving” have the pop-punk energy yet simultaneously dive into serious topics like grief and how it shows itself in mundane things like watching horror movies or sad moments in television shows.

Songs from the album that I resonate with the most are early tracks, “mary” and “90’s kid,” which both explore the young and exciting life of a teenager from finding a person who you are so deeply infatuated with — a “mary,” if you will — to staying out all night and singing at the top of your lungs. “90’s kid” in particular is slightly reflective with Hibberd singing about being in her 20s and how life was much simpler as a kid.

The seventh track of this album is called “anti fragile,” and it takes the record down a different path in an emotional confession of a breakup. Hibberd emphasizes in this song that because she has been so crushed emotionally, she feels “anti-fragile” in her life, meaning nothing can tear her down as much as losing someone you love. This song feels so vital to this album, bringing listeners down a vulnerable path with the singer-songwriter herself.

It is clear that Hibberd does an excellent job of mixing two distinct styles in this album. On one hand, she is sharing her casual attitude with listeners in songs like “pretty good for a bad day” featuring All Time Low’s Alex Gaskarth. Despite some daily annoyances she faces, Hibberd keeps moving and is optimistic. A lot of the songs on this album share this trait of upbeat casualness in the face of struggle. 

On the other hand, some songs on the album like “not the girl you hoped” don’t hold back from telling listeners how Hibberd is actually feeling in her struggle. This song shares Hibberd’s insecurities and her feelings of not being good enough for someone. This album is a rollercoaster of intense emotions and playful teen spirit.

I think Hibberd has done a really cool thing with this album in sharing her life experiences and the heartbreak and grief she has faced while also making it fun to listen to. The relatability of this album is what pulls me in for more listens. 

Even though it might not be too clear on the first go around, it’s eventually obvious Hibberd used this record to divulge her innermost feelings. It’s nostalgic, it’s fun and, most importantly, it’s real. I hope as Hibberd continues to make more music and grow her career, she will also continue to reveal herself more to her audience.


4/5 stars


Featured photo courtesy of @lauranhabberd, Instagram