Made of nothing more than strings, singing, and a glaring piano seemingly created to punctuate this single’s climax with utter melancholy, Lila Blue’s “Simple Song” comes as advertised in its title. There are no fancy bells and whistles behind the mixing board, no synthetic melodicism, nor a prominent surreal hue created by crafty mastering. There is only Lila Blue and the medium for which she seems to have been born for, and in “Simple Song,” I think it becomes all the more difficult to argue against her importance to a growing American singer/songwriter scene that needs to embrace more female voices (and hers is one of the most passionate I’ve heard in the past year).
Setting the mood up in “Simple Song” didn’t take anything but a guitar’s quiet strumming, a pick almost an agent of percussion thanks to this incredibly crisp production quality. The harmony that Lila Blue creates is subtle but quite evocative, bringing to mind a simpler age in folk-rock that saw a lot of crossover between independent players like this one and more experimental artists forced onto the outside for their compositional moxie. It’s not retro cosmetically, but the bones of this piece are older than this artist’s home country is.
The piano contributes a devastating definition to the lyrics that is immensely expressive but not overpowering beside the guitar and the vocal at all. Contrarily, I think that the instrumental faceting was perfectly chosen for the kind of mood Lila Blue wanted to produce in both the music video for “Simple Song” and the track itself, given it’s the black and white construct that seems to spotlight what this singer/songwriter does better than almost anyone else in her scene at the moment. This is a beautiful work and something that should further endear her fans to the one-of-a-kind persona she’s creating for herself.
Other than California’s own Clare Means, I think Lila Blue should be considered one of the most promising singer/songwriters of the contemporary indie singer/songwriter community as it’s coming to be recognized in 2021. The two are quite similar artistically, but I think Lila Blue stands out just a bit more in this performance because of the literacy with which she wears her most personal emotions on her sleeve. She’s got a lot to say, but even when it’s larger than life, it’s coming out with the same level of elegance and grace her casual statements would – and that’s a poetic talent you cannot teach in any school.
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