When she was only 17, the Canadian singer’s debut album wowed the world. Now, as Let Go hits its 20th anniversary, its pop-punk anthems are finding new life thanks to TikTok
Tue 31 May 2022 08.00 BST
For a generation of girls who spent years exclusively wearing butterfly clips, bright blue eyeshadow and pale pink everything, the release of the “pop-punk princess” Avril Lavigne’s debut album, Let Go, on 4 June 2002 was not merely a new sound, it was enlightenment.
In an era when bubblegum pop and “sexy baby” personas reigned, the 17-year-old Lavigne emerged as its antithesis. Rarely seen without a baggy pair of jeans, heavy kohl eyeliner and a loose tie round her neck, she co-wrote her own songs, with lyrics about skateboarding and getting fired from a chicken shop. Her first two singles, Complicated and Sk8er Boi, both spent half of the year on the Billboard Hot 100 and Let Go remains one of the 20 bestselling albums of the 21st century.