olivia rodrigo sour album

Olivia Rodrigo – 1 step forward, 3 steps back | Lyrics Meaning & Song Review

“1 step forward, 3 steps back” is the fourth track on Olivia Rodrigo’s 2021 album ‘Sour.’ The song is a tale as old as time. She is stuck in a relationship that couldn’t have been more bad for her. It always feels like they take more steps backward than forward in their relationship.

Olivia Rodrigo announced her debut studio album ‘Sour‘ following the massive success she gained with her debut single “driver’s license.” She followed up this success with another single “deja vu.” Announcing the new album, she commented “alsoooooo i f*cked around and made an album. i’m so proud of it.”

It is interesting to see that Taylor Swift and Jack Antonoff have been given co-writing credits on “1 step forward, 3 steps back” along with Olivia herself. Olivia plays the piano herself on the music track.

Listen to “1 step forward, 3 steps back” by Olivia Rodrigo

“1 step forward, 3 steps back” Lyrics Meaning and Song Review

Verse 1

A classic tale unfolds. She calls him to check on him. Just asks a few questions, the regular how do you dos.’ But something triggered him and he snaps back at her. She is upset and she has no clue what happened. This is also not the first time this happened. And she feels like every one step they take forward together, they take three steps backward. She can already see the end of this relationship.


A very confused Olivia asks the boy what is really going on. Does he really love her like he says he does? If he does, can he so brutally hurt her with words? Is this normal? Is this what a relationship is supposed to be? She is confused and hurt. And she knows that a relationship is not supposed to be either of those.

Verse 2

Olivia Rodrigo wonders why she even tries at this point. Is she in love with the pain he causes? Or is she in love with the bipolar nature of this boy? It is like a puzzle every day with him. She never knows which version of the guy she can expect each day. Maybe this is the most exciting thing she has in this relationship.

All this back and forth has Olivia wondering if she is the problem. She has begun to doubt herself, which is never a good thing.

Let us hear what you think about this song in the comments below. Check out the complete lyrics on Genius.

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