Some music makes your blood flow, as though sound itself can dilate every last vein and artery in your body. “Lost In the Dead End,” the new single by Czech singer-songwriter Valerie Mood, is one song that will be sure to make your fingers tingle and send shivers down your spine.
Part Latin jazz, part pop, and part je ne said quoi, “Lost In the Dead End” is a love song, but tells of the kind of love that is as much a war as it is a dance. Indeed, the Phrygian mode, the scale that forms the backbone of the song’s melody, has been associated with battle since before the days of Plato and Alexander the Great. Mood depicts two lovers engaged in a duel of romance, circling each other, retreating, and advancing in hopes of spotting a weakness in the other’s defenses.
Mood deploys a sound full of darkness and grit. Driven by percussion, bass, guitar, and accordion, each chord seems to crawl out of a steaming primordial ooze, ascending in chromatic harmonies before falling back downwards. In one memorable moment, a sultry saxophone, perhaps her opponent’s reply, erupts forth in a duet with the accordion and voice.
Mood’s voice, however, takes center stage. She sings with a quality that is both breathy and full of conviction, as tuneful as it is assertive. A times, she delicately layers on vocal harmonies, but the melody is her prime concern. The lyrics are remarkably elegant, and you cannot help but hang on to every word.
“Lost In the Dead End” is available on all major streaming platforms.
Written by Jacob Jahiel
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