For a song titled, “Tin Man,” Ben Dalby’s new original single sure has a lot of heart. His is a protest song for the modern day, an outright assault on jadedness, isolation, and self-domestication. With the self-depricating introspection of John Lennon’s “Nowhere Man” and the upbeat energy of a pop-rock ballad, Dalby confesses his own struggle with a diminishing spirit while urging us all to grow more connected with the world, rather than merely shrinking it.
Dalby’s title implies a feeling that is all-too familiar in the modern day. Life can feel sterile, our very humanity seems mechanized, eclipsed by monotony, anxiety, and artificiality. It is a world that sometimes seems more head than soul.
But his song offers both hope and redemption. Granted, Dalby’s protagonist doesn’t always win this battle. Despite every self-revelation and attempt at engaging with the outside world, he occasionally reverts to an insistence on control and safety. Yet the real source of promise is found in the upbeat music, which ebbs and flows in a reminder that such a journey is a constant process full of missteps and relapses. Mistakes don’t mean that, in Dalby’s words, we shouldn’t try to “Get up!”
Dalby’s songwriting can only be described as infectious. Each verse, chorus, and refrain offers plenty of opportunities for ear worms, and the guitar-and-percussion driven beat will inevitably result in prolific foot-tapping.
Written by Jacob Jahiel
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