Lianne La Havas and Stopping Everything

Have you ever had something happen where you just stop and do this?

Like it is too amazing, one just has to stop everything and pay respect to it. Because that happened to me when I first heard Lianne La Havas’ “Unstoppable”.

The long intro climaxes into this wonderful amalgamation of every thing I love about music, crisp drums that boom, warm bass thumping, vocals that are just perfect with a ton of space. And then it just keeps getting better, accentuating horns and strings, spacey lead guitars, massive background vocals, perfectly used pianos and these wonderfully placed riffs. There is just so much warmth, reverb, and feeling in this song and I just love it.

I know I have talked at length about atmosphere in music and this song has it by the truckload. She talks about outer space and one can feel the effects of it. The massive amount of reverb, use of auto-filters, and the subtle delay add depth and interest - not to mention the large amount of instrumentation that is constantly coming and going. Some of the things in the song also seem to just stretch and change pitch. Kind of like when the Millennium Falcon goes into light speed, the stars stretch toward the ship and then snap back into place.

Lianne’s vocals are outstanding, they take command of the amazing backing and control it through the entire song. The backing revolves around her vocals and accentuate them beautifully, bringing everything to atmospheric heights. Hopefully you don’t mind me waxing poetically, because the way the song is setup brings to mind the life of a star. In the beginning everything gathers together and it explodes into this small star. Then it grows larger and larger and larger, it eventually reaches maximum potential and then it breaks down. It begins this awesome and terrifying explosion known as a supernova, and it folds into itself and becomes a black hole.

This track has me super excited for her second album Blood which comes out July 31st. I really liked her first album and this song is better than almost every one of the songs on that. I am really hopeful that the rest of the album is like this.

by Addison Garry (@addisonagarry)