REVIEW: Maggie Rogers Celebrates Love and Humanity in New Album ‘Surrender’

Featured Photo Credit: Olivia Bee

On July 29, pop artist Maggie Rogers released her new album, Surrender. The album follows her 2019 debut, Heard It In  Past Life, which earned Rogers a Grammy nomination. Surrender also features lead single “That’s Where I Am,” which was included on Barack Obama’s 2022 Summer Playlist. 

Many tracks on Surrender embrace love with all its complications, and “Anywhere With You” carries this thematic thread forward. Rogers tells the story of two flawed individuals deeply in love and desperate to make their relationship work. The track begins with low piano and soft vocals, but Rogers gives the song a heartbeat and instrumental fullness as she expresses her love and care, singing, “Maybe the miles can make up for the things you lack, I’ll go anywhere with you.” The song comes to a close with a sweet piano interlude, offsetting the guitar and drums built up throughout the track and contributing to a sense of honest sentimentality. 

“Shatter” is a celebration of the human heart in all its intricacy. The song opens with crunchy electric guitar and synth reminiscent of the eighties, and steady, fast-paced drums drive the track forward. The song represents the experience of strong emotion- anger, fear, and desperation- building until it requires cathartic release. She speaks of breaking through the numbness as she belts, “I could break a glass just to watch it shatter, I’d do anything just to feel with you.” Rogers adopts the strength of these sentiments, and her voice turns frantic over the course of the track as she roars through the bridge, making it the ideal song to scream along to. 

The album’s final track, “Different Kind of World”, begins its arc as an acoustic ballad reflecting Rogers’ fears for the world. The song is both an expression of concern and a call for change as Rogers puts forth a desire for unity and peace. The track crescendos with Rogers’ emotion, as rich harmony and electric guitar fade into the second chorus. In the song’s epic finale, drums usher in a symphony of electric guitar driven noise, bringing the work to an explosive, inspiring close. The song’s rally cry, “When we’re riding all together, it’s a different kind of world” perfectly encapsulates the album’s message- to create change, we must embrace our strongest feelings, love, and staggering sense of humanity… and surrender to them fully.