Commentary Rihanna

Rihanna’s ‘American Oxygen’ fails to live up to hype

Rihanna released a new track this weekend titled “American Oxygen,” and — to absolutely no one’s surprise — the accompanying music video is a Tidal exclusive.

“American Oxygen” had previously been teased during a March Madness promo and was performed before its release on Saturday during a March Madness festival in Indianapolis.

The track begins with piano chords followed by a well-written chorus in which Rihanna sings “breathe out, breath in, American oxygen.” Though I don’t love the production, the track has a strong intro that left me really excited for a long-awaited, classic Rihanna-sounding banger. Sadly, the rest of the track left me unamused.

After the beginning hook, “American Oxygen” starts to sound like a remix of a great Rihanna song with its pulsing synth sounds powering right through the short verses. With the drum tracks and background vocals also joining in, there is a lot of noise happening, and it doesn’t work well.

There is little beyond the hook that stuck with me after multiple listens. All together I think “American Oxygen” falls short — a lot shorter than it should have! It’s disappointing, but “American Oxygen” has nothing to offer beyond a good chorus that made for a great March Madness promo track.

Final Score: 2/5

Click here to visit Tidal and watch the music video for “American Oxygen.”

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