Addison Rae enters her pop girl era with “2 die 4”

Looks like TikTok stars are still hell-bent on pumping out music – but are they any good? 

Addison Rae’s dancing videos boosted her fame on TikTok in 2019, where she quickly gained popularity. Now, she has amassed a following of 88.4 million on the app. The social media personality hasn’t stopped there – in 2021, she made her acting debut in the Netflix original film He’s All That, a gender-swapped She’s All That remake, and released her debut single titled Obsessed. This year the star has been just as busy, with two new movies in the works and the release of debut self-titled EP ‘AR’.

‘AR’ is not entirely a new collection of songs for Rae – and some people might be familiar with them, too, hailing from her ‘lost’ debut album that was leaked in 2022 and subsequently scrapped afterwards. Although a discouraging temporary pause to Rae’s music career, she’s clearly not afraid of letting her music meet the eyes of the public again, this time authentically. And this time, the response seems to be a little bit more accepting. Addison Rae has seen her share of internet hate, as is the case for most TikTok personalities branching out from their roots (and I’ll admit, I scoffed a little bit seeing this pop up on Spotify), but its reception hasn’t been all that bad so far.

‘2 die 4’ is the second song on this EP, and a collaboration with Charli XCX to boot, an established artist with some similarly glossy pop beats such as ‘Boom Clap’ and previous features with Iggy Azalea and Icona Pop. The collaboration isn’t surprising, considering they’ve been pictured together since 2021, and her popularity is definitely giving Rae’s album a leg-up in the music world – but that isn’t to say that Rae can’t hold her own, either. 

‘2 die 4’ isn’t exactly the boldest release to kick off Rae’s music career. In fact, it’s exactly what you’d expect from a TikTok personality, indulging in and even thriving on an exaggerated glamour and the confidence of a pop-star. Addison Rae has hit the mark on the formula for easy pop boasts – these confident and almost over-the-top, self-love style lyrics proclaiming:  “my neck? To die for – my legs? To die for”,  mixed with a strong beat are perfectly surface level. It’s shiny and fun and easy enough to dance to, with a little bit of a frisky undertone, begging “so come take a bite in the middle of the night” and other similar sentiments wishing for a “bad boy” to come around. All of these buzzwords are basic fodder for the typical pop-song fan, but surprisingly, Rae is able to put them to good use, with enough of the charisma, confidence and flirtatiousness (and maybe a little bit of autotune) to pull it off. 

There’s a reason why many of these Youtube comments think that ‘2 die 4′ belongs on a pop radio station. Truly, it does – think the span of beats akin to Fifth Harmony’s ‘Work From Home or Zedd’ and Alessia Cara’s ‘Stay’ with the girl-power self-loving vibes of Hailee Steinfeld’s ‘Most Girls’.

While not presenting the boldest entry into the music industry, following Rae’s rocky ordeals with internet fame and song leaks, the release of ‘AR’ did not have to be extraordinary. It only had to defy expectations and – and, surprisingly, it looks like it has. This marker of Rae reclaiming the self-empowered and comfortable pop tracks previously taken from her is a fitting entry into her music career and a departure from her TikTok stardom that still calls back to her shiny social media personality. Though if she decides to delve into more music alongside her lineup of movies this year, let’s hope that she might venture a little further beyond the mould.