The new single by Brisbane-based singer-songwriter Noralyn contains more than a note of mystery. Paradoxically drawing you in and holding you at arm’s length, “One of the Few” is full of unresolved contradictions. The song is simultaneously an invitation and a warning, a seemingly delicate surface that reveals an impenetrable interior. Only she can let you in.
Behind a shimmering soundscape, Noralyn’s breathy and enchanting voice reaches out from some seemingly faraway place. Each note she sings is made even more solitary by the piano, sometimes in rolling arpeggios and other times mirroring her every syllable. The song’s modal melodies (a la “Scarborough Fair”) evoke an almost ancient theme that carries you across time. Its harmonies, primarily pop with sprinkles of jazz, draw you into their warmth, complementing the atmospheric electronic effects. But don’t get too comfortable.
Despite the hypnotic sonic dreamscape, Noralyn’s lyrics contain a stern warning. Deceptively hidden behind tranquil music, her words reveal a subterranean danger, urging her addressee not to get too close or probe too deeply. And yet you feel you want to because her music has an indescribably strong gravitational pull. Like a siren from one of Homer’s epics or an insect in close proximity to a lamp, you cannot help but want to get closer, even if it might result in catastrophe. Yet perhaps she does not really want you shy away either; despite her initial warnings she later urges you not to run away.
But if you are very lucky, and Noralyn allows you into her inner world, you have the privilege of being “One of the Few.”
“One of the Few” is available on all major streaming platforms.
Written by Jacob Jahiel