Is Ava Max another prefabricated popstar?

In an era where pop is no longer the mainstream, a girl like Ava Max is a breath of fresh air.

The veteran divas are no longer on top of the charts, and they’re exploring new sounds and building their emporiums with national television gigs, Vegas residencies, and makeup brands; most new artists are riding trap and indie beats. The pop as we used to know is apparently dying. And then, Ava Max comes with a sound taken directly from the late 2000s: catchy hooks, rhythmic handclaps and a bubblegum sound, willing to take over the world. But it’s she more than another prefabricated popstar with a blonde wig? She still has to prove that.


Born in Milwaukee as Amanda Ava Koci; she’s is full of Albanian blood. She’s the daughter of a couple of Albanese immigrants who came into the states looking for a better chance in life: thanks to their sacrifice, she’s now able to take a shot in the titanic quest of keeping pop alive. Here rise to stardom has been actually somehow slow: she hasn’t taken the world by storm. Actually, her current success seems to be the result of continuous and arduous hard work.


Her first global hit came only last year in 2018, but her first efforts date back from 2017. She debuted on the music world as a feature on the track ‘Clap Your Hands’, alongside Le Youth. The song slipped under the table, but it helped to raise some attention towards her. Thanks to this first song, she drew the attention of some big labels, and Atlantic Records ended up signing her, taking some big stakes on the young pop promise.


Her debut single as a solo artist under Atlantic Record was ‘My Way’, an unapologetic statement piece that previewed what would follow: pop in its purest form. Nevertheless, the song didn’t make it that far into the charts, and Ava Max stayed as a minor name in the pop realm. Still trying to get the general public to know her name, she collaborated with Gashi in the track ‘Slippin’, trying a more mid-tempo vibe that sounded far too similar to Bebe Rexha, making it hard for her to become a recognizable voice in the industry.


It wasn’t until ‘Sweet But Psycho’ that Ava Max managed to ignite the conversation about her. Her third single seemed to be following her previous efforts, quietly going under the radar, but it quickly became an international phenomenon. The sleeping hit suddenly took over the streaming services and radio stations all over the world and became her first (and so far, only) mega-hit. The video of the track it’s close to reaching 300 million views on YouTube and the song already amasses more than half a billion plays on Spotify.


In the song, Ava sings smart and catchy lyrics over a production that undeniably remind of the late years of the 2000s and the earlier of the 2010s, the golden years of pop. Her attitude and her vibe remind of those of Katy Perry, taking us back to our teenage dreams: the repetitive and catchy ‘ma ma ma ma-mind’ of the chorus is a major throwback to the ginormous hooks that made Lady Gaga famous in the earlier years of her career. With Cirkut on the production credits, we can totally understand where she is coming from and what she aims to do.


The legendary producer has worked alongside some of the biggest pop divas: Katy Perry, Kesha and Britney Spears are some of the few popstar Cirkut have made hits with. Now, he’s working with Ava, helping her to make her way to the mainstream and reintroduce the now classic pop sound we all taught dead.


After ‘Sweet But Psycho’ Ava Max managed to get into the spotlight and she started to get enlisted in some A-list collaborations. Now, she has a track with David Guetta, one of electronic music biggest names and Jason Derulo, another heavyweight on pop music. With her name out there, it seems like the young Albanian superstar it’s about to get to the top of her game.


Naturally, the comparisons haven’t taken too long to begging. With the videos of her first performances becoming viral on Twitter, the blonde wig, catchy hooks and careful choreography, the young promise reminded us all to the beginnings of the larger-than-life pop diva, Lady Gaga. Ava isn’t unaware of the reactions of the public to the parallelisms between her and Gaga, but she takes it easy: she isn’t worried about being compared to what in her eyes it’s one of the greatest pop divas of the last decade. If something, she thinks it’s a good sign that people see Gaga in her. Nevertheless, she’s determined to make her own way in the music industry.


After the success of ‘Sweet But Psycho’, Ava released her latest single ‘So Am I’, a self-empowering anthem about embracing one selves uniqueness. The song hasn’t reached the heights of her previous single, but it serves to settle another stone on the path the singer it’s making for herself. Also, the song opened the door for the singer to speak publicly about her scoliosis, a medical condition that has marked her from her childhood, and her desire to not only be a pop star but a philanthropist, wanting to help kids around the world who has to endure this condition.


Will Ava Max be the next pop superstar? It’s she more than a blonde wig with catchy hooks? We still don’t know for sure. The american-albanian girl still has a long way to go if she wants to reignite the flame of pop music. Undoubtedly, she has taken some good steps towards her goal: we cannot but keep an eye on her, following her every move. It’s been a long time since we last had a young girl trying to climb the stairways up to stardom. Ava Max still has to prove that she’s more than a one-hit wonder. We have no doubt she has what it takes to make it but will the world think the same?


/ Popnable Media
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