"I had all this anger bubbling up inside me": Olivia Rodrigo hails the righteous fury of Babes In Toyland and Rage Against The Machine as core influences on new album Guts

Olivia Rodrigo
(Image credit: NDZ/Star Max/GC Images / Getty Images)

Olivia Rodrigo has hailed '90s alternative rock artists Babes In Toyland and Rage Against The Machine as core influences upon her acclaimed, recently-released second album, GUTS.

The 20-year-old Californian singer-songwriter will top album charts across the world this week with her follow-up to 2021's massively-successful SOUR, and she's on the cover of the new issues of Rolling Stone and Interview magazine.

In the Rolling Stone cover feature, Rodrigo reveals that, when she was a teenager, she would sleep with a turntable next to her bed, and her mother would wake her up each morning by dropping the stylus on Babes In Toyland's Fontanelle album.

“Rock in that feminine way, that’s just the coolest thing in the world to me,” Rodrigo tells the magazine, revealing that she tried to tap into the Minneapolis band's aggression and energy on the punkier songs on GUTS, particularly opening track, All-American Bitch.

“I think everyone can relate to being put in a box in some sense,” she says. “Something I always grappled with, especially when I was younger, is feeling like I couldn’t be angry or express dissatisfaction or complain for fear of being ungrateful. It was drilled into me, and it caused a lot of problems. I had all this anger bubbling up inside me - especially when you’re a teenager and you’re confused and you feel like the world is out to get you and you’re so insecure - and I’d have dreams where I was going crazy. I felt like I could never be like that in real life.” 

Rodrigo also credits Rage Against The Machine for inspiring All-American Bitch's quiet/loud dynamics.

 “I have been listening to so much Rage Against The Machine this year,” she says. “That’s my favorite band right now. I would just play it over and over again on my way to and from the studio.” 

Watch Rodrigo and her band rehearse All-American Bitch - with the singer/songwriter 'throwing the horns' - below:

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.