The Angsty, ‘Clueless’-Inspired Vibes are Strong in Olivia Rodrigo’s New Video for “Brutal”


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Rock Cellar Magazine
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Breakout pop/rock superstar Olivia Rodrigo dropped a new music video for “Brutal” on Monday. The opening track on the 18-year-old singer/songwriter/Disney star’s debut full-length album, Sour, which was released on May, the clip was directed by Petra Collins and coincides with the album’s release on vinyl.

The video itself is especially heavy on 1990s vibes — a decade Rodrigo wasn’t even around for, of course — with slight visual homages to Clueless, the beloved 1995 satire/comedy starring Alicia Silverstone. Rodrigo also exorcises her youthful angst throughout the video, pouting on Instagram Live and standing alone in an eerily empty mall.

“Brutal” is the track that generated some plagiarism claims levied at Rodrigo and her songwriting team, which includes producer/co-writer Dan Nigro, formerly of the Long Island indie band As Tall As Lions.

Some said the main riff is a bit too reminiscent of Elvis Costello’s “Pump It Up,” but the legendary songwriter/singer quickly refuted such claims with a thumbs-up:

Click here to pick up Sour on LP from our Rock Cellar Store
Click here to pick up Sour on CD from our Rock Cellar Store

Collins, who directed the “Brutal” video, also directed Rodrigo’s “Good 4 U” clip, which also featured high school-era vibes as well:

Olivia Rodrigo has earned groundbreaking acclaim the world over since emerging with her debut single, “Drivers License,” in January 2021. The track’s success made her the youngest artist to debut atop the Billboard Hot 100 chart, where it stayed for eight weeks.

“Good 4 U” also hit No. 1 in multiple countries, another smash-hit success from Sour — which became the first debut album in history to generate two No. 1 debuts on the Billboard Hot 100.


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