Summer Walker Goes Beyond the Breakup Record on 'Still Over It'
Published Nov 11, 2021Still Over It, Summer Walker's follow-up to 2019 breakthrough Over It, clearly lays out its subject matter in no subtle terms with song titles including "Throw It Away," "You Don't Know Me" and "Constant Bullshit." While the Atlanta songwriter's relationship reflections aren't unfamiliar territory, her demonstrated artistic progression is what elevates these themes beyond classic breakup record tropes.
Walker leads off with a Cardi B confessional on "Bitter," and ends Still Over It with invocations from another special guest on "Ciara's Prayer," showing her own curatorial skill and substance in having her guest artists reveal authentic life experiences. It's also what leads to inspired features from Omarion ("Screwin") and SZA ("No Love") as Walker's lyrics contrast with their honest contributions, while the standout "Toxic" features a refreshingly vulnerable verse from Lil Durk.
Of course, Walker's own voice and relatability work to carry the nicely paced 20-song album. The bulk of Still Over It spans an emotional spectrum of breakups, self-doubt and renewed freedom, until the aptly-titled "Closure" allows for Walker's voice to shine through controlled pitch changes. In contrast to her debut, she has become more melodically adventurous, while that aforementioned vocal control is imbued with a greater effortlessness.
Walker also shows an improved ear for beat selection: throwback banger "Dat Right There" has its upbeat nature supported by the Neptunes, and when the production gets more varied on the afro-tinged "Unloyal" with Ari Lennox, the results are spectacular.
While its subject matter isn't anything unexpected to Walker's fanbase, Still Over It's storytelling arc and risqué production choices add depth to make this collection more than a solid R&B album. Walker's latest is the first step beyond the predilection of her genre. (Interscope)