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Single Review: Andrew Reed & the Liberation “Too Little too Late”

There’s a lot of urgency to the rhythm in this track, but it doesn’t feel like Andrew Reed & the Liberation are rushing their way through the song. Every beat is carefully arranged to bolster the emotive tone in the strings, and though the lead vocal is the loudest element in the mix, it doesn’t overpower the instrumentation in the background enough for us to miss out on the melodic fireworks. The harmony between Reed and the guitar is the sonic glue holding this single together, but it isn’t the most exciting component for us to examine.

Andrew Reed & the Liberation’s use of reverb in this single should be looked upon as a shining example for their peers to take note of. Far too often in the past year, I’ve heard extraordinary material from artists in pop, rock, and hip-hop that has sadly been utterly unlistenable because of a misguided echo, but “Too Little Too Late” seems to exhibit the surreal qualities that it can add to a song when it’s applied properly.

The strings reverberate into the ethers with a fleeting emotion in their resonance that is only equaled by the lyricism of our singer, and instead of overstaying their welcome in the track, the haunting echo springs right back into place before we get into the next verse.

The strings are deeper in the mix than the drums or the vocals are, but they’re unstoppably glowing from the very instant that they make their first appearance in the song. Their place in the arrangement is dependent on Reed’s poetic emissions, and in perfect time with his words, they lend a melodic texture to the narrative that is translated gorgeously in the music video for the track. The video surprised me with its detailed images and polished stylization, and it lives up to the bar that was set by this band’s past content quite excellently. All in all, this feels like a win for Reed and his cast of cohorts.

Sondra Watanabe



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