A sneak peek at Avril Lavigne's next album. The Canadian star spoke to EW.com about finding a new sound, and avoiding labels

By Brian Hiatt
January 28, 2004 at 05:00 AM EST
Avril Lavigne: David Greenman/starmaxinc.com/NewsCom

They used to call Avril Lavigne the anti-Britney — but maybe it’s time to start calling Britney the anti-Avril. The 19-year-old Lavigne’s 2002 debut, ”Let Go” sold more than 6 million copies, and sent record company scouts running out to sign every nubile, guitar-slinging female they could find — as Spears’ bubblegum popped, with her latest, ”In the Zone,” moving a relatively meager 1.6 million units. And rather than, say, plunge into a quickie marriage, Lavigne has been quietly working on her (still untitled) second album, due in the spring. The ”Complicated” girl spoke to EW.com about who really, like, writes her hit songs.

How was the songwriting process different for this album?
I had no plans with producers or professional writers or anybody. When I got off tour, I actually got together with my friend [Canadian singer-songwriter] Chantal Kreviazuk for lunch. We’re, like, best friends. I was like, ”Wanna write a song together?” And so we wrote in [Canadian rock band] Our Lady Peace’s rehearsal space every night for two weeks in a row; we wrote a song every night. And we had so much fun, because nobody knew. Everyone thought I was in Toronto, just hanging out, getting my head together and stuff.

What did you write about?
Sometimes people would get on my nerves on the road, and I’d write a song about it. Remember, you’re with these people every day and they’re in your face. This might sound weird, and I don’t know if the song’s going on the record, but I ended up writing a song about paparazzi and just how rude they are. I think that’s one of the songs I’m most proud of lyrically, as far as really expressing myself and getting it across. It’s totally, like fast and aggressive and I love it. It’s called ”Take It.”