Summer Walker reflects on her relationships in her debut album

Summer Walker’s debut album, “Over It”, has set a new standard for rhythm and blues. Bringing in 154.7 million streams in the week subsequent to its release, “Over It” holds the record for the biggest streaming week release of an R&B album by a woman. A blend of the emotional spectrum, this album grants its audience a deeper look at the 23-year-old Atlanta singer’s experience with love over the course of 18 tracks.

Walker’s album style unfolds like a narrative; through her collaborations with various artists on different topics she is able to divulge into feelings associated with distinct events in her life. She opens with the titular song “Over It”, her voice starting out deep and mellow before rising higher to give way to a stronger voice that delivers concrete opinions through hard-hitting lyrics. Rousing curiosity with a hint of nostalgia, her introduction paves the way for discussion of relationships.

In “Playing Games,” Walker gives a shout out to the men who refuse to publicly acknowledge their relationship with her, preferring to keep it private and consequently hurting her by taking advantage of her commitment values. It’s a bold choice to call out her exes; yet, it demonstrates Walker’s growth in understanding her own self-worth.

Dedicated to her current partner and the producer of the album, London on da Track, “Drunk Dialing…LODT” conveys Walker’s difficulty balancing vices with relationships. Beginning with a slow, heavy beat that wraps around Walker’s soothing voice, the song confesses how alcohol often prompts negative decisions — such as Walker contacting her exes. Halfway through the track, the rhythm switches to a bouncier beat upon which she reflects upon how love ultimately guides her to the right path.

During “Me,” Walker discusses how she copes with conflicting emotions following heartbreak. She explores her alternative options, ranging from doing nothing to threatening her ex-lover with a gun. Walker does imply to the audience, through a delicate melody overlying a dejected tone, that this threat is empty. However, these reactions hint at a universally shared reaction to heartbreak and loss that audiences of all backgrounds can relate to, thus further drawing in her audience to the difficulties plaguing her love life.

The value of “Over It” stems from Walker’s in-depth reflection of her past relationships. In the same way that journaling often relieves the stress of one’s day, Walker reveals her most intimate feelings with her audience while simultaneously finding closure through her lyrics. No matter what conflict she is going through, her voice remains strong — a reminder to her audience that they, like herself, will be able to overcome whatever they’re faced with.

By Milo Santiago, Staff writer 
Photo courtesy of Billboard