Does anyone else miss the very specific time in pop punk music when artists like All Time Low, The Maine, and Mayday Parade were dominating the genre? As a matter of fact, my first show in this scene featured all three of these artists playing one show together. And all three of these bands are still touring and making music.
While I don’t remember exactly what I was wearing, I’m sure it was something paired with colored skinny jeans. It took some time for this very niche sector of music to introduce women into the space, and, like most things, can still be improved upon, but I saw some semblance of representation through Cassadee Pope, the once lead singer of Hey Monday (before pivoting to country and becoming a contestant on The Voice).
We’ve continued to see the genre evolve to a more inclusive space with the success of artists like PVRIS, Against The Current, and Meet Me At The Altar: and now (in my opinion) with the arrival of Los Angeles-based musician Sarah Barrios. Barrios, who released her first single of 2021 independently with “We Don’t Have To Die,” is back with new single “Aftermath of You” ahead of her upcoming EP.
The idea for “Aftermath of You” was born by Barrios’ love for books, a love that runs so deep that she runs a series on her TikTok titled “Book To Song” where she shows her writing process based off of books and/or characters.
Barrios speaks on the inspiration of the song in a press release, nothing that the novel The Cruel Prince was the catalyst for “Aftermath Of You:”
“This song is about two people who are so similar they seem like soul mates, but when you put them together, they burn the whole world down. I write most of my songs with a visual in my head and the artwork for this song was exactly how I pictured these two characters and this song coming to life.”
Barrios’ love for literature and her take on the continuously growing pop-punk scene positions her with an interesting perspective, making me ponder the possibility of artists like Taylor Swift (you know I had to mention her) ever deciding to dip their toes into this sound, especially because it seems like both artists’ songwriting processes are born from similar areas of creativity.
Not only did Barrios perform at major US festivals in 2021 like Lollapalooza and Governor’s Ball, but she also went on her first North American tour this past fall in support of fellow Staged Haze favorite, Christian French. Barrios has accumulated over 900K followers across social platforms and her 3rd EP is slated to release at the top of 2022.
“Aftermath of You” is out now.