Review: "Pretty Little Addict" - Haiden
Familiarity is a concept, often, conflated with “safety” and “rightness”. Yet, what’s comfortable isn’t always good for us. Haiden’s new single “Pretty Little Addict”, addresses this non-intuitive emotion, feeling used as medicine, absent real friendship. He goes on to say “You only called when you needed to be saved”, a sentiment many (of us) have experienced or perpetuated ourselves. Thus, many people can likely relate to medicating using other people (some we may not even like), avoiding our own uncomfortable feelings. The song raises a critical yet important distinction—one between “comfortable” and “healthy”—challenging us to rewind old patterns, shattering through the familiar.
Starting with groovy guitar plucking, the track reminds me of a dive bar—late night karaoke turning into a chill yet vibey concert. While the production primarily uses guitar hits and Haiden’s subdued voice (similar to a voice memo), the song surges during the chorus, using slow-but-steady drum beats (+ high hats) and vocal doubles. He repeats the main hook “You know I’ve had shitty exes but damn” throughout the song, an earworm that is extremely catchy. I really enjoyed the song‘s production trasnitions, a quick pause before launching into a villain-origin-story guitar riff, reminding me of something that’d triumphantly play in guitar hero. Haiden’s reverbed voice further fills up the soundscape while a glitchy production moment finishes the track.
Having amassed 275K Spotify listeners, Haiden released his first single “Unless” (2021), which featured latinx-flavored production and cleanly delivered falsettos. From the punk-rock “Sorry To Your Next Ex” to the upbeat, Shawn Mendes-inspired "Can't Hurt Me”, Haiden packages the mainstream pop sound super well, adding elements of hispanic music and classical guitar. Reminiscent of popular artists (e.g. Troye Sivan), his recent single “Pretty Little Addict” foreshadows his upcoming EP, accounting stories of addiction and heartbreak. Having released his debut album “Good Grief” in 2022 and the somber, guitar ballad “Flight Attendant” earlier this year, I appreciate his experimentation with more emotional lyrics— songs that feel subtle yet resonant. I hope he continues creating, clearing seeing his songs playing on the radio in coming years!
Written By: Conner Pettit