Def Jam has made a star out of Alessia Cara, the 17 year-old wallflower from the Toronto suburbs. And if things continue to go on as they are, she may soon join Frank Ocean and Kanye West on the label’s wall of fame. Before she can count herself amongst these hip-hop greats, though, she must first release her debut album. Although we’re still waiting on a formal release date, Cara has dropped a new five-track EP, Four Pink Walls, to tide us over. In advance of its Friday release, Cara has shared four new tracks, including “Outlaws,” “I’m Yours,” “Seventeen,” and the EP’s title-track.
While her debut single “Here” was heavily rooted in hip-hop, Four Pink Walls sees Cara adopt a cleaner image, exploring various degrees of the pop spectrum. On the opening track “Seventeen,” punctuated beats and broken handclaps provide a backdrop for Cara’s triumphant vocals. Her desire to relive those carefree days is alarmingly clear, but more than anything else, the track serves as a perfect companion piece to Taylor Swift’s “22.”
This theme continues throughout the rest of the EP with tracks like “Outlaws” and “I’m Yours,” a big-budget production that’s got all the ingredients to become a number 1. In the video for the latter, Cara is chased throughout her neighbourhood by a young, moustachioed admirer, making for a quirky and endearing video. It’s not exactly what you’d expect from such a bashful songwriter, but it does reveal a willingness to write an unapologetic pop song.