Immunity by Clairo: Album Review

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Clairo is a singer-songwriter who wrote Immunity.

Immunity is an album by the artist Clairo. It includes eleven alternative soft rock songs, the album spanning about forty-one minutes. The central theme of the album is love. Many of the songs are ballads, and Clairo did an amazing job writing and tying all of them together.       

Clairo is a singer-songwriter who mainly writes songs in the styles of alternative bedroom pop and soft rock. She started sharing her music through YouTube in 2017 at eighteen-years-old, her first song being “Pretty Girl”. Her music tells stories, her feelings poured out as lyrics. From there, she grew a large fanbase and continued to share her music. Immunity is her debut album, following her first EP (extended play; mini-album), diary 001. Immunity was released in 2019, when Clairo was twenty-years-old, many fans anticipating it months prior. The album was produced by FADER Label, an independent record label, and Clairo herself, resulting in it being labeled an indie (independent) album.          

The album is a collection of love songs. However, the songs cover more than one type of love. There is grateful love, sarcastic love, longing love, lost love, and more discussed in the songs. They tell the stories of Clairo’s experiences with these kinds of love, what they made her think and how she dealt with it. Clairo is also bisexual, which is reflected in Immunity, for both ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ are said and addressed in multiple songs. It is a great way to represent bisexual people and the LGBTQ+ community. However, a person doesn’t have to be bisexual to enjoy or relate to the songs. Clairo’s expressive voice can make anyone feel her heartache, yearning, and admiration.

The eleven songs on the track are “Alewife”, “Impossible”, “Closer To You”, “North”, “Bags”, “Softly”, “Sofia”, “White Flag”, “Feel Something”, “Sinking”, and “I Wouldn’t Ask You”. The songs that deal with heartbreak are “Impossible,” “North,” and “White Flag.” These discuss missing someone, accusing and forgiving, and getting over a past lover. “Closer To You”, “Softly”, “Sofia”, and “Sinking” all express falling in love or wishing for someone’s love. Clairo sings about wanting to be with someone in all of these songs, but in many different ways; “Closer To You” expresses reluctant love, as in trying not to like them but being unable to help herself. “Softly” describes the overwhelming power of love how it can take over when one falls too deeply. “Sofia” is about asking who she liked to give their possible relationship a chance. “Sinking” discusses the unsureness of love in the beginning but warming up and embracing it later on. Songs that express conflicting views about love are “Bags”, “Feel Something”, and “I Wouldn’t Ask You”. “Bags” and “I Wouldn’t Ask You” are about wanting more out of a relationship, constantly wanting to break off, but something always drawing her back in. “Feel Something” is different, longing for love but not being able to get over the past. She wishes she could be in love, but she misses her old lover. “Alewife”, unlike the others, is about grateful love. The song is about when Clairo was thinking about committing suicide. Fortunately, her best friend, Alexa, got help and saved her life. Clairo is eternally grateful for her. All of the songs are beautiful and impressive.          

Some interesting additional elements included in Immunity are autotune and a children’s choir. In the song “Closer To You”, Clairo’s voice is prominently autotuned, creating a lively yet smooth tone. Though the other songs include autotune as well, this song sticks out because the song starts with strong autotune after an electric-sounding instrumental introduction. It sets the song apart from the others, a unique and noteworthy addition. Also, multiple songs feature a child’s voice, usually followed by a children’s choir. Most significantly, in the song “I Wouldn’t Ask You”, the choir is featured in the chorus of the song. They also sing during the powerful and uplifting bridge of the song. Clairo grew up extremely insecure about herself. The choir is supposed to represent Clairo’s nine-year-old self, lifting her up instead of putting her down. This addition deepens the meaning of the song and makes it so much more special.     

Overall, Immunity is an incredible album. Anyone can listen to it and understand Clairo’s feelings. The songs are deep in meaning and soothing to listen to. Each one is special and unique, just like every love story.