Softly situated between the percussion and Chelsea Cutler’s lead vocal, we find a guitar part as gilded as the summer sun in the new single “Walk Me Home.” Cutler performs as a guest beside Illenium in this all-new single from Said the Sky, and although a lot of collaborations in indie-pop tend to have a bit of a stout foundation when it comes to who is under the spotlight the most, this isn’t true of “Walk Me Home,” as it gives us equal access to all three of these musicians in what feels like a romantic display of chemistry.
The vocal that Chelsea Cutler is giving up here is provocative, and she deliberately holds back ahead of the chorus to make the hook just a bit sharper than it already would have been. She’s being quite tactical with her execution, and when sharing the stage with a pair of players like Said the Sky and Illenium, it certainly makes sense why. There’s a lot of pressure in this mix, but she’s using the tension to set off one of the more melodic components of the track period, which is more than a lot of other vocalists would have been able to do in “Walk Me Home.”
There’s an innocence to the music video that really struck me as powerful the first time I watched the visualizer for this single, and while it gets a little more complicated as it presses on, it never gives itself over to theatrics in the name of fitting the pop part. I don’t think Said the Sky wanted to make something particularly experimental with this track, but at the same time, I don’t believe he would have brought someone like Illenium into the fold had he intended on being completely conventional with the aesthetical presentation of the video.
A delicate balance keeps everything on an equal level in “Walk Me Home,” and although I would have liked a little more out of the guitar in the latter half of the song, this respect for efficiency is something I can’t disagree with in any capacity. When well over half of the pop artists in America and beyond are getting way too indulgent for most audiences to tolerate, you recognize a leaner piece like this one when you hear it. Said the Sky once again outpaces his peers here, and with a high-caliber pair of co-conspirators to boot.
“Walk Me Home” is undeniably a rousing pop collaboration that sees all of its players going out on a limb, but for what they’re wagering in the studio I think they’re going to see a big bump in affection from critics and fans around the globe. This is daring songcraft, but what’s more is that the performance feels so organic despite the fact that these are three very unique minds trying to come up with a singular narrative together. I don’t know how they did it with as much grace as they did, but in any case, I could go for more material like “Walk Me Home” in the future.
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