It’s Alright, It’s OK: Ashley Tisdale has finally returned to us.
Nearly one full decade after the release of her sophomore record Guilty Pleasure (9 years, to be exact), the High School Musical chanteuse responsible for nostalgia-inducing bops, including “He Said She Said,” “Be Good To Me” and “Crank It Up,” has confirmed that she’s dropping her third studio album called Symptoms later this year via indie label Big Noise.
The album was produced by Goldfinger frontman John Feldmann, who’s produced gems for some of our faves like Hilary Duff, Ashlee Simpson and The Veronicas, and it kicks off with the premiere of the lead single: “Voices In My Head“!
Ashley is straying far away from the angsty pop-rock days of Guilty Pleasure on “Voices In My Head,” and instead returning to her pure pop roots on the infectious mid-tempo all about her owning her insecurities and vulnerabilities.
“All the voices in my head/ Always try to break me/ Fuck me up and change me/ But talk is cheap/ This is the last time/ I listen to the voices in my head,” Ashley declares across the layered, guitar-laced pop production. “I know they never stop talking/ Always sabotaging/ But talk is cheap/ This is the last time/ I listen to the voices in my head.”
Is “Voices In My Head” the most forward-thinking production? No! Not at all. In fact, Ashley‘s hopping on an overdone radio trend of slow-building verses and stuttering beat-driven big choruses (see The Chainsmokers), but she emotes in a way that is undeniably compelling here — especially when there’s a bit of agony involved. It’s a more grown up Ashley Tisdale that sounds confident and secure in-herself as Ashley Tisdale “the artist” and not Ashley Tisdale, the “Disney girl.” I’m here for it!
“There are so many times I’m at an event or even just at a social party and I feel like I’m not good enough to be there, and I feel that a lot of us struggle with that. That negative thinking, that little voice in your head… I just felt it was important,” Ashley told People about the inspiration for the track. “I think for the first time, I’m really proud of who I am. I think that when you struggle with those things, instead of being like ‘Oh I hate that stuff,’ I really accept it,” she says. “I think that’s what makes you beautiful, that you’re not perfect.”