Charlotte OC’s Bold Songs “Bad Bitch” & “Forest” Offer Stunning Preview of LP 2

Charlotte OC © Maximillian Hetherington
Charlotte OC © Maximillian Hetherington
Ever one to delve into the most heartbreaking, tender, and raw parts of herself in song, Charlotte OC has opened a thrilling new chapter with “Bad Bitch” and “Forest.”
Stream: “Bad Bitch” & “Forest” – Charlotte OC




Ever one to delve into the most heartbreaking, tender, and raw parts of herself in song, Charlotte OC has, for the past half-decade, been of the UK’s most exciting and expressive singer/songwriters – a voice for herself and all those who wear their hearts on their sleeves. The artist recently opened a new chapter of her songbook with the dual-released tracks “Bad Bitch” and “Forest,” offering a first look at her forthcoming sophomore album through two deeply vulnerable songs exploring self-worth and empowerment, love and connection. All told, they offer a stunning preview of what’s to come, and serve to reaffirm what we’ve long known about Charlotte OC’s undeniable talent.

Bad Bitch / Forest - Charlotte OC
Bad Bitch / Forest – Charlotte OC
I talk myself to myself
Talk myself right out of being myself
I’m too quick to give you control
Someone said it’s just your age
You’re 29 and jaded
It’s just a phase
But I take everything you say home
My Own worst enemy I know
I’m insecure, it’s getting old
3 Negronis down, here we go yeah
‘Cause I’m a bad bitch
Tell me you haven’t noticed
I decide what’s wrong or right
‘Cause I’m a true mother fucker
They’re ain’t no other
Don’t tell me how to live my life

Released April 15, “Bad Bitch” and “Forest” together make up Charlotte OC’s first single off her forthcoming second LP, Here Comes Trouble (out later this year via Embassy of Music). Each a visceral experience in its own right, the songs are Charlotte OC’s (born Charlotte Mary O’Connor) latest since last May’s Oh the Agony, Oh the Ecstasy EP – described by Atwood as “an emotional roller-coaster [that reaches] soulful, mature, and colorful new peaks as she surrenders herself in music.”

Charlotte OC © Maximillian Hetherington
Charlotte OC © Maximillian Hetherington

If her new material is any indication, it would seem Charlotte OC’s intimate explorations prove ever-more fruitful and fulfilling with time. Both tracks resonate with personal and universal sentiments, and each is as lively and emotive as it is plain catchy.

‘Cause in the end we always die, so let’s not overthink it
My myself and I, we just keep on keeping it on
But this all paradox, I’m trying not to try, but I cannot
Setting myself up to fall, I don’t know anything at all
I’m insecure about getting old
3 negronis down, yeah he we go
I’m bad bitch, tell me you haven’t noticed
I decide what’s wrong or right
Cos I’m a true mother fucker
They’re ain’t no other

“Bad Bitch” reckons with one’s self-confidence – literally, between sober and inebriated states – and speaks to our tendency to let others dictate how we feel about ourselves, rather than embracing our inner light and trusting our guts.

“This song was born after one of the most horrific meetings I had with an A&R,” O’Connor tells Atwood Magazine. “After an hour and half of sitting in his office listening to him big me up then drag me down, whilst contradicting himself in every other sentence, I left the meeting feeling like I’d been hit by a bus. I went to a bar on the side of the river in Berlin and me and my manager bought a bottle of fizz and I sat there in the heaviest state of confusion, crying and laughing. I couldn’t quite figure out what had just happened.”

“I’ve been to a lot of A&R meetings, but this one was that bad…it was impressive. I drowned my sorrows and a couple of days later I flew back to the UK AND turned up to see my producer Couros. I explained my state of mind through this bizarre encounter. I wanted to explain where my brain went that day, when I was sober and the drastic change of when I’m intoxicated – I went from overly insecure, doubting everything about myself, to overly confident; there was no middle ground. It was one or the other. The verses are me in a sober state and the chorus takes you to me being smashed and feeling myself and taking zero bullshit. It’s one of my favourite songs on the album, so that A&R did me a favour. He’s still an idiot, though.”

“Bad Bitch” is gutting, but it’s the kind of song we all need to hear: One that empowers through experience. Whereas that track ultimately comes across as a kind of message of self-love, its companion “Forest” rings out with intimate love and affection for another.

Written at home in Blackburn during the UK’s first lockdown, “Forest” is a bittersweet reckoning with one of love’s hardest truths: That no matter what happens, there will be an ending. “One day, we all have to say goodbye.

i showed up, somewhere in the northern quarter
you showed up, i knew i had to stay a while
then you took my emotions and drank them like wine
now take a hold of my body, i’ve been waiting all night
now every time i see a forest i think of you
something about the bluebells of spring take me back to your room
and every time i see your face i wanna cry and i don’t know why
there’s a beauty that i see in you that is blind to your eyes
and there’s a happiness i get from you
it’s so cruel, so cruel
cos one day we all have to say goodbye

“‘Forest’ was in the first UK lockdown, and I started watching After Life by Ricky Gervais and I got incredibly overwhelmed with how scary it is to fully love somebody,” O’Connor recalls. “To meet that person who you create all these memories with, that person who you can’t imagine ever not being there, or even having this with any other connection like this with another human.”

“And then I realized that in love, you will always have to say goodbye, whether it’s because of a break up or a life ending. I was missing my boyfriend as we couldn’t see each other for a long time during lockdown so I wrote this song for him in Blackburn. I list all the things that will forever remind me of him, my favourite memories of him and me and my admiration for him, in hope that if one day anything was to happen he would know how I felt about him. I was also feeling like I was losing him, so I wrote this to remind him of me.”

light up every room and every hallway
yeah you, you light up every corner of the mind
sitting in your kitchen, drinking all your wine
we talked about aliens, and maybe i could be your wife
now every time i see a forest i think of you
something about the bluebells of spring take me back to your room
and every time i see your face i wanna cry and i don’t know why
there’s a beauty that i see in you that is blind to your eyes
and there’s a happiness i get from you
it’s so cruel, so cruel
cos one day we all have to say goodbye


“Forest” find O’Connor spilling her soul with fresh vigor. Achingly lilting yet emotionally devastating, it roars with such intensity that you come to forget that the whole song starts with just naked vocals and an acoustic guitar. By the track’s end, OC leaves us breathless and moved – affected by the sheer weight of love and connection she’s spelled out so preciously in song.

It’s been a long, long four years since Charlotte OC’s debut album Careless People brought O’Connor’s songwriting and rich voice to an international audience.

Since then, the artist has (for the second time in her career) parted ways with a major label and found an independent foothold – yet while industry experiences certainly play their part in her new music, O’Connor’s inspiration comes far more from her daily goings-on. Life’s ebb and flow promises to come to life in vivid form on Here Comes Trouble.

Charlotte OC © Maximillian Hetherington
Charlotte OC © Maximillian Hetherington

“In the space of two months, everything that had once been was no longer,” O’Connor says in reference to her new album. “My heart had been broken in a way I could never have imagined. This resulted in me partying too much, not sleeping , hardly eating and smoking like a chimney. Self destruct mode, activated. I felt totally lost in space and nobody could bring me back to earth. Through this dark time I was forced to acknowledge things about myself, and sometimes not in the most positive way. This is me self-deprecating, this is me standing up for myself , this is me madly in love , horrifically heartbroken, angry , this is me praying to a god i don’t believe in about a life I couldn’t lead, because I had nothing left to lose I could not have made this album without the love and support I received from my producer, Couros, and the small bunch of co-writers I collaborated with on some of these songs. They picked both me and this album from the depths of darkness and helped me expel the demons into my work.”

“Bad Bitch” and “Forest” are clearly just the tip of an excitingly fresh iceberg for Charlotte OC.

— —

:: stream/purchase “Bad Bitch” here ::
Stream: “Bad Bitch” & “Forest” – Charlotte OC



— — — —

Bad Bitch / Forest - Charlotte OC

Connect to Charlotte OC on
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram
Discover new music on Atwood Magazine
📸 © Maximillian Hetherington

:: Stream Charlotte OC ::

Love, Loss, and Hope in Her Darkest Hour with Charlotte OC

:: INTERVIEW ::


More from Mitch Mosk

Premiere: Grace Basement’s “Summertime Is Coming” Shines Warmth Through Sorrow

Grace Basement's new song "Summertime Is Coming" is a well-timed, if not...
Read More