“Is you a sperm donor or a dad to me?”
This line from “I Love You, I Hate You” highlights the complicated relationship between British-Nigerian rapper Little Simz and her father. “I Love You, I Hate You” marks the fourth track off of Little Simz’s newest album Sometimes I Might Be Introvert that dropped in July 2021. You may recognize Simz’s name from the viral TikTok audio of her song “Venom,” a badass feminist anthem about the struggles of being a woman both in the music industry and in every day life. She continues showcasing her talent for having no holds barred within her lyrics with her brutally honest new album.
The phrase “I love you, I hate you,” is repeated throughout the entire song as Little Simz unpacks her conflicting feelings about her dad and his absence in her life. The sounds of a crescendoing orchestra echoing amongst Simz’s lyrics builds an emotional atmosphere for listeners. The pain behind her words is palpable and is accompanied by melancholy instrumentals. On the other hand, Simz realizes her strength outside the frame of desiring her father’s approval and attention, and upbeat trumpets enhance this emotion in the track. The differing sounds of the instrumentals perfectly capture the love and hate Simz feels simultaneously.
Simz has a way of creating inspiring, empowering lyrics, while showing such vulnerable parts of herself at the same time. She handles the topic of family trauma with care, reflecting her own experiences while also sending a message that she has grown and healed through her adulthood. Parts of this track read as a letter to listeners with similar struggles, with her expressing how she understands them and wants to approach this topic with compassion and empathy. Little Simz crafts music that can make anyone feel like the baddest bitch, while also incorporating complex emotions behind her lyrics that many can easily identify with.