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Single Review: Baker Grace “Midnight Thoughts”

As top-heavy in the mix as a surreal indie rock track but sporting something a little lighter in terms of its vocal harmonies, Baker Grace’s “Midnight Thoughts” will leave pop puritans in quite the conundrum this late winter season – and my gut tells me it’s all by Ms. Grace’s design. Without borrowing too much from the chamber pop crossover players that have been stylizing something quite similar in their work over the past two years, this artist introduces herself as a free aesthetics-minded songwriter whose narrative doesn’t start and end with lyrics alone. Multidimensionality is the story of “Midnight Thoughts,” both as a single and a music video.

Visually speaking, I was spellbound by the gentle feel of the video for this track right out of the box. Although there’s an argument to be made for props when they’re implemented in the right fashion, I like the muted tone of the imagery here, even when we’re looking at something colorful and stained with an emotion not disconnected from the lyrics Grace is singing in the background. She’s owning our hearts on both sides of the coin in this piece, which is something that never gets easier for performers, no matter the genre.

While there’s no denying the conceptualism of this release, I think it’s worth pointing out that Baker Grace is still living within her means artistically. Her ambitions are certainly front and center when considering the aesthetical parameters of her songcraft, but she isn’t even considering the idea of weighting this rhythm down with club beats, oversized guitars, or anything too liberal in comparison to her soft, unurgent vocal. She’s in no hurry to overdevelop her style, and it’s for this reason that I think she’s as distinctive compared to her contemporaries as she is in “Midnight Thoughts.”

Baker Grace is an adventurous singer and songwriter, and she’s only going to get better as she continues to add to her discography – especially with a piece like this one. “Midnight Thoughts” has a groove that she’s able to straddle like nobody’s business, and with her knack for captivating us with more than just a chorus harmony, there’s no reason to believe she isn’t on the verge of turning a major creative corner. Her skillset is going to outgrow the underground a lot sooner than later, and anyone who thinks this isn’t the case needs to check out “Midnight Thoughts” for themselves.

Julie Blankenship

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