Thursday, July 28, 2022

Indie Music: Bel-la, "Nothing's Gonna Get You Back"

by Germar Derron

Are those crickets?

The music video for "Nothing's Gonna Get You Back" thoughtfully explores its theme through image, rhythm, melody, and soundscape. For a more stripped-down, pristine, studio version, the single also exists untethered from video.

But even before I watched the video, the song pushed a visual--night, solitude, a journey, light that obfuscates, and dreams.

This song, mix-wise, goes hard against the grain, and triumphs unscathed. The instrumental portion is produced and mixed dry and straightforward. The vocal is heavily treated, wet--dreamy. Here, Bel-la reminds me of every Dido song. I love Dido. Typically, this split, or contrast, in styles produces a track that is disconnected. The vocals usually seem to sit on, or ride on, top of a backing track--like a clumsily produced home recording. But here, it works. It adds to the solitude. It's not at all distracting or unappealing. 

I compare the content of the song to "One Sweet Day," by Boyz II Men and Mariah Carey. Of course, the tone and genre share little resemblance. But Day began as two different songs. I believe Boyz II Men had a song about the murder of their road manager. Carey's song lamented a lost romantic relationship. Even as a young child, I could feel the push and pull in that track, before I knew the story behind why. Here again, on "Nothing's Gonna Get You Back," I feel both senses of loss. But there is no push and pull, there's a painful agreement.

Beyond the mid-point of this track, a guitar solo replaces the vocals of Bel-la. It's the first time that an instrument takes lead or takes on the dream, or dreamy quality. And when the vocal returns, the entire track is somehow even more cohesive. And that cohesiveness feels like consolation, relief, release--a resolution.

Similar to Dido's "Here With Me," Bel-la's "Nothing's Gonna Get You Back" would do very well as the theme song on a hit television show.


Post a Comment

Social Compare