UPSAHL, one of the fastest-growing musicians working right now, has been dropping new songs after the success of her smash hit “Drugs.” With a strong TikTok following, millions of listeners and a catalogue of successful features joining her, UPSAHL has been writing for Dua Lipa and working with iconic producer Rick Nowels. Releasing a new hit off of her upcoming EP, UPSAHL sends a message with “People I Don’t Like.”
Instead of using her typical vocal style, UPSAHL opts to sing-speak on most of the song. The rolling sound of her fluid vocals makes it sound as though she’s making her way around a constantly spinning room (think: the rotating room party scene from “Euphoria”).
The constantly bored tone in her voice can allow the listeners to imagine UPSHAL smiling a sickly sweet grin at other partygoers, only to turn around and roll her eyes the second they leave. The way the song is crafted, the listener also imagines the other participants in the conversation doing the exact same thing. Even the first pre-chorus references UPSAHL’s own complacency and participation in the “fake” lifestyle, “Everybody in this party’s f***ing fake/I really wish that I could say it to your face/But I won’t, so.” No one is exempt from the confines of these social situations. UPSAHL acknowledges this in the second pre-chorus, saying, “Everybody in this party’s f***ing fake/And so am I, but I just got here so I gotta show some face.” This self-awareness is what drives the song, as the people UPSHAL doesn’t like actually reflect parts of herself.
Repetitive conversations and shallow compliments fill the verses, as UPSAHL flits from person to person. Discussing shoes, phone numbers and past meetings they’ve chosen to forget, one can begin to understand some of UPSAHL’s frustrations. She gives us a glimpse inside the conversations on the chorus, “Hello, it’s so good to see you/We met before, but nice to meet you/Yeah, I don’t really wanna be here like…What’s my name, do you remember?/I’m pretty sure you have my number/So let’s pretend we like each other…”
On the final verse UPSAHL sends a message to those at the party – “You’re trying too hard.” However, the following lyric represents the dangers highlighted in the song, “Keep trying, keep trying, keep trying.” Even though everyone is miserable and annoyed with each other, they keep feeding into a cycle of lies because each individual is so desperate to be liked.
The music dips and spins, along with UPSAHL’s voice. Known for her honesty about the party scene and her exhaustion with it, UPSAHL creates a catchy yet bemoaning song with “People I Don’t Like.”