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“I Sometimes Wish” by Estani

Emotion is what drives a ballad forward more than anything else. You can have raging drums, patient strings, even a singer whose voice is something straight out of the heavens in the sky, but unless there’s a passion for the lyrics that are being crooned to us, the track fails to glow in the way that Estani’s new single “I Sometimes Wish” does. Rather than giving us a powerful instrumental intro to build off of with her poetry, Estani is getting right into the guts of her balladic talents here, and establishing her dominance over the underground once again with another spellbinding performance. 

This vocal is, as I alluded to in the first paragraph of this article, an angelic force to be reckoned with in “I Sometimes Wish,” and it’s made even more endearing to the audience through the unchained love that this singer is pouring into her verses. Even when her heart is weighing heavy on a harmony, it does not stop her from being able to fall head over heels for the depth of the instrumental melodies behind her, integrating a linguistic tale with one that can never be spoken outside of the tones and melodies in this performance. 

You could argue that the tempo is in charge of the mood in “I Sometimes Wish” and completely win my concurrence, but I do believe this was intentional on the part of Estani. She wants the rhythm to control the context through which she’s giving us a story in this song and had she not I just don’t know that she would be going to the lengths to stay clear of the fever pitch when it finally comes into focus here. This is a methodical singer and songwriter, and those who underestimated her abilities are going to feel pretty silly when they hear this. 

The space in this mix is another interesting detail from my perspective, and I think it helps to give Estani enough room to avoid a pressurized backend, which has been a common encounter I’ve run across in the past few months of reviewing new pop ballads. She doesn’t want to center everything on a hook in this single – she’s actually looking to balance her words with the music in a way that lends equilibrium to the big picture rather than agency to one element over another, which is commendable and harder to do than a lot of pop musicians would ever admit. 

“I Sometimes Wish” is a great example of the skills that Estani has in the studio and on-screen, in the music video for the song, but anyone who heard her work before checking out this latest release already knew what they were in for here. Estani has the voice and the virtuosic compositional talent to construct things that have a lot of feeling to them, and in this song, she takes a lot of the thunder away from her much-hyped mainstream competition with little more than her attitude, poetic contrition, and willingness to be vulnerable. 

Mindy McCall



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