Many people displaced by the lockdowns and restrictions of the last several months have taken up music or reacquainted themselves with art forms they may have neglected. However, in the case of Robert Hunter, the pandemic was an opportunity to reflect on society, health issues, and general mass fears to weave a narrative of hope and optimism. With his latest single, Permanent, Robert Hunter, an already rather accomplished songwriter/recording artist, uses these insecurities to remind his audience this is not permanent and that the good times are coming back. “If you’re lost, don’t be ashamed or lose your way, it’s going to be OK. It’s not Permanent,” he says. Permanent is a soft-rock jam carried by an upbeat rhythm that encourages enthusiasm. The major open chorded melodies which carry the vocals are bright and sanguine as the resonating overtones carry musical imagery of that optimism Robert Hunter is portraying throughout the lyrics. What I particularly enjoy is the subtle way the bass stays perfectly in the pocket with those drums yet, opens up the melody by capturing those upper register octave notes. This is highly effective as this contrasting melody almost adds harmony to the vocals as the two shape a dynamic rhythm and encourage audiences to sing along and also really grasp the main theme of everything going to be fine.
Permanent would be an excellent addition to any commercial Rock, Soft Rock, Country, Adult Contemporary, or Middle-Of-The-Road radio playlist. The infectious choruses, coupled with that perky, joyous, and quite jubilant way Robert Hunter resolves each of his cadences, make Permanent so very repeatable and easy to listen to. The overall themes really hit home with the targeted audience. The overall production on Permanent is of major label caliber, ensuring this song will fit right in on the radio and in people’s playlists as they continue to isolate it. Of course, with a song like Permanent, playing over and over again, we see other elements, both thematically and metaphorically, that may suggest the pandemic is not the only thing we can recover from. Kind of brings a whole new level of enjoyment to this track as different audiences get different meanings from such uplifting themes.
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