Review Summary: Raw. Miserable. Captivating.
Born from what appears to be a deeply saddening disposition; Single Soul delivers what might well be one of the most emotional audio voyages of the year.
Favouring a simplistic guitar style that takes aim directly at the feelings of a listener, ‘I Wish I Was A Bird So I Could Fly Away’ is a cold, lonely meander through lost times and current, dismal situations. With but a guitar, a sprinkling of piano and occasionally the addition of his depressing vocal style, the artist utilises a variety of seemingly stripped-back, yet aggressively effective techniques.
‘More Hydrocodone Each Day, For Three Days in Succession’ introduces the listener to the dejected content of this 9 track, emotional downwards-spiral; albeit briefly. Connecting directly to the longest track on this album, immediately it is clear that this will be no ‘up-beat’ recording. ‘If I Could Go Deep Into The Ocean I Think I Could Find Peace’ is clearly the sobering attraction of the album, tumbling along with its captivating and consuming sadness. There are no holes in this song, even though the production is low and the vocals are not entirely intriguing in their bubbling hopelessness, it all somehow coalesces into a quality 6+ minute track. Opening up the album with a quick introduction followed by one of the strongest tracks was an intelligent move on the creator’s part. Perhaps the reason this track reigns supreme over the remaining songs is because, at over 6 minutes, it is mostly instrumental. While the vocals are not terrible, and they do fit the mood of the album somewhat, I feel as though the instrumentation is so much stronger that it transcends the need for too much vocal input. Just the right amount was applied on this track, leaving it as top competitor for best addition on ‘I Wish I Was A Bird So I Could Fly Away’.
On the note of vocals, or the more pleasing lack thereof, the instrumental tracks have an uncanny ability to draw the listener in, despite being devoid of any guiding voice. This is mostly thanks to clever song-writing, but maybe because they offer a relief from the barrage of lyrics, which are reflections of the song titles. If you are looking for motivation for the day ahead, you certainly won’t find it here.
Continuing on from the thick, chocking atmosphere the previous two tracks create, the remainder of the album follows much the same template of misery. Despite their similarities, however, almost all of the tracks have their own character that allows them to stand out from the other. In an album such as this, individuality is key for a successful record.
If perfection is your thing, you may also be slightly disappointed by what you find here. There are some obvious stumbles, especially in the production quality, which is also responsible for the annoying resonance of the piano in the beginning, and somewhere in the middle of ‘I Will Die Alone, Without a Voice, Without a Sound’. The guitar playing is also, seemingly intentionally, a little sloppy at times. Again, if accuracy and intricacy is your thing, you might not be completely captivated by this artist’s technique, but you will, without a doubt, be moved. If there is one thing this album is full of, it’s disheartened passion.
When this albums final moments appear, in the instrumental track ‘Snow only Falls Once a Year in This State. And On the Day it Falls Someone Dies’, there will be no adulations of joy, but there may be a silent respect for what this artist has crafted.
If I Could Go Deep Into The Ocean I Think I Could Find Peace
I Wish I Was A Bird So I Could Fly Away
I Fell Asleep Bleeding and Woke Up Covered in Blood
I Will Die Alone, Without a Voice, Without a Sound (if you are not bothered by the production on the piano)