Grab your tissues. After many single releases since 2019, Sasha Sloan has finally dropped her debut album Only Child. Released on October 16, the album is comprised of ten songs that take listeners on an emotional journey of thought-provoking self-reflection.
Sloan starts the album strong with “Matter To You,” where she sings about what it means to be important to someone. It serves as an important introduction to a motif of the album: relationships’ impact on self-worth.
The next two songs, “Only Child” and “House With No Mirrors”, explore Sloan’s thoughts of “what if?” as she poses the question of what would happen if things in her life were different. On “Only Child,” it’s what would happen if she had a sister. She delves into the emotion of loneliness, in contrast to “House With No Mirrors,” where she explores self-image. Sloan displays the all-too-relatable feelings of not being comfortable in one’s own skin. “House With No Mirrors” illustrates what it feels like to be helpless and overwhelmed.
“Lie” and “Hypochondriac”, the following two songs, represent a transition into Sloan’s relationships and what they have done for her. In “Lie,” she sings about her own worries and how she wants her partner to lie, telling her what she wants to hear. This story creates an underlying feeling of uneasiness, which Sloan further develops in “Hypochondriac”. The latter song marks a shift from the preceding negative emotions, discussing how her relationship has helped her. Her partner becomes a figure for her to fight for, as she sings about becoming a better version of herself for her partner.
The next two songs, “Is It Just Me?” and “Santa’s Real”, shift back to self-reflection. The former brings back the feelings of loneliness and isolation, where Sloan wonders if anyone relates to how she feels, where the latter reflects on her childhood when she didn’t have these dark emotions. She yearns for a bright, happy world, like the one she had when she was young and innocent.
“Someone You Hate” discusses the negative side of relationships as Sloan sings about becoming no longer important to someone she once loved.
On “Until It Happens To You,” Sloan sings about waking up to bad news and how no one can actually feel the same unless it has happened to them. This track especially falls directly in line with the overarching feeling of loneliness present throughout the album.
The final song, “High School Me,” ends the album on a positive note, where Sloan describes how different she was in high school and what she has learned since. She describes how, ultimately, she is proud of herself.
Only Child outlines a journey of relationships and introspection, tying together feelings of loneliness and anxiousness while following a story of self-growth. Switching seamlessly between songs about relationships and songs focused on childhood and innocence, Sloan expertly creates a narrative that brings listeners into her mind, putting indescribable emotions into words. If this is just her debut album, I can’t wait to see what’s to come.
You can stream Only Child below.