“This song was inspired by mistakes that I made which caused me to push a person away, and the heartache and despair I went through as a result.”
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Frankly Speaking is always an artist worth sitting down for, whenever a new song emerges. In the case of this single, the sound is a fair step away from the acoustic-guitar-led tones of Chasing Butterflies, but the songwriting is absolutely of the same insightful, poetic and deeply human nature, and these are qualities that stand tall throughout eclecticism in style and subject matter.
All I Can Hope For is a song that sees piano and vocals lead with purity and openness. There’s a comforting familiarity to the set-up, which draws you in with ease – the artist’s leading voice has a naturally soulful yet delicate strength to it, which carries a melody beautifully. The lyrics though, these are where things get interesting – making surely to quickly reach out for your attention, and to hold on right the way through.
From a songwriting perspective, Frankly Speaking masters the set-up and build to the drop beautifully. The hook resolves in a satisfying way, the title proves recognisable, easily memorable, and the fall back down to the second verse fits in nicely and continues to keep you gripped.
While this is clearly a personal, intimate story, the details are balanced well with references that are a little more vague – I pushed you away… Listening to my thoughts… – this has the effect of connecting with even the most distant of listeners in a genuine and powerful way.
There’s a slightly seasonal vibe to the build-up through the full-instrumentation, a level of joy and brightness that contrasts in a striking fashion with the melancholy, self-blame and desperation of the lyrics. The whole thing feels bizarrely like some sort of big-band ballad, a moment to be shared and embraced. What’s clever is that the hook actually reinforces this. Though the vast majority of the lyrics deal with regret and negative reflections on life, what really lingers with you is the simplicity of that line about hope – the lasting image of you (hopefully) opening your door. The song leaves you wondering, but it also leaves you with an air of optimism.
Superb songwriting. As suggested, always an artist worth sitting down to listen to, and this is far from the exception.