Stoney - We Belonged | Track Review | By Volume

The kid that went down isn't dead; he just can't find his phone. The Hold Steady - Almost Everything
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Stoney

We Belonged

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Author: on November 18, 2013

It’s sometimes easy to forget that in order for something to become cliché it requires a certain level of ascension, of momentum. Petrarch once told someone their love was like a lovely summer day or whatever — and people ate that shit up. Of course, I’m not about to suggest that calling something cliché is not a valid point of criticism, far from it, but sometimes things come along that remind you why certain genres became popular to the point of saturation in the first place. If someone were to write a Petrarchan sonnet these days they would probably either a) be writing on the inside of their tenth grade locker or b) not be a very interesting writer. But someone who manages to write a Petrarchan sonnet that still manages to be invigorated with the writer’s own sense of personality and style, well, that person might just astound you.

With this in mind, everything about the sonic template and song structure of “We Belonged”, including the star-crossed lovers adorning the lyric sheet, is always on the edge of falling into the cliché. It’s the kind of thing we’ve heard time and again: the slow-building crescendo, the lonely strummed acoustic guitar that swells with droning organ and twinkling glockenspiel, capped with some lilting vocal melodies. Stoney churns out a track that seems to travel straight down that well-worn path to Our Hearts; yet, something sticks with you after “We Belonged” fades to black. Because while none of the elements here surprise, they remain effective, and that is something worth praising. A lot of the song’s success comes down to Mark Stoney’s willingness to let his voice explore its range. To that end, the soaring chorus and the biting swoop of Stoney’s voice traverse such a well-worn path and still manages to find new hiding places. By the end you’ve found enough new things that you forget that you’ve heard it all before — and that’s the mark of very good song, now isn’t it?

Shuffle

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