The theatrical pop we hear from SpaceWind’s single “Now & Forever” is scarce in the 2019 music world. This is a physical composition engaging listeners on a variety of levels, but grabs hold of your imagination more than anything else. It plays like soundtrack music in some ways. It isn’t difficult to envision these four minutes and change single accompanying breathtaking visuals in a major motion picture, particularly at some climatic point, and SpaceWind’s singing is strong enough to measure up to the moment. The young Japanese singer/songwriter has a professional presence in the field of psychology, but even a single listen to what she achieves with “Now & Forever” shows music is her true calling.
The song has a moderate pace from beginning to end and SpaceWind may surprise some listeners with how little she relies on massed vocal harmonies. There are brief scat vocal harmonies near the opening and ending of the track, but the bulk of “Now & Forever” isolates her voice and shows she has more than enough voice to flourish under the spotlight. The dense yet effervescent arrangement thins during her vocal passages as well and it affords listeners even greater opportunities to focus on her singing abilities. I dare say she could even make this a convincing listen if she tackled the track acapella.
There are a variety of instrumental elements making their presence felt during the song. Warm synthesizers dominate much of “Now & Forever” rather than draining it of life or narrowing its emotional range – SpaceWind deserves a lot of credit for knowing how to incorporate electronic instrumentation into her music in a vivid and human way. She doesn’t eschew more traditional instruments altogether. Guitar makes an impact on the song and SpaceWind even builds passages into the song where sharp and intelligent lead guitar breaks take time to shine for listeners.
“Now & Forever” benefits from world class production values. You may go into hearing this song for the first time half wondering if you’ll hear a true indie production curtailed by a limited budget and lack of access to five star facilities and equipment, but SpaceWind surprises. There is nothing about this song’s presentation that gives it a low-rent quality but, instead, it sounds like a major production in every way. Each instrument possesses a full and robust sound, the mix balances the various elements in a professional way, and SpaceWind’s voice soars from the arrangement with bell-like clarity.
Her new single will likely propel her towards widespread notice in her native Japan, but SpaceWind has her sights on reaching a global stage. She is ready. There isn’t anything about “Now & Forever” that would fail to resonate with listeners around the world despite whatever differences they may share with this young performer. SpaceWind is, to my great joy, far from interested in creating yet more disposable pop fluff for a disposable world. Instead, “Now & Forever” proves without a doubt that writing and recording musical art is her true goal.
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