These days, people are quick to level complaints against the constant bombardment of noise experienced in everyday life. Modernity, it might seem, is loud. However, few have pointed out that silence can be equally as unsettling, alienating, and, ironically, even deafening. With his new pop-rock ballad, “Vicious Silence,” US-based singer-songwriter Micah Thunder explores this often-overlooked phenomenon in a song worthy of its concept. Despite the title, “Vicious Silence” offers a welcome deluge of sound, masterfully crafted, skillfully performed, and intricately mixed.
It is hard to summarize a song as richly produced and musically varied as “Vicious Silence,” but a few moments deserve special notice. The prelude of opening piano chords ring like bottomless pools of sound, quickly joined by the layering of reverberating choir and Thunder’s own captivating voice. By the time electronic effects, guitar, and percussion join the fray, the song’s sonic extremes have utterly captured your attention. Thunder knows how to make a strong start.
The song’s refrain is a tuneful, soaring melody saturated with different instruments, both breathtakingly beautiful and immensely impactful. Without a doubt, this is the centerpiece of “Vicious Silence,” the high point of register, energy, and volume. As the music returns to the pensive opening chords, a cello joins in dialogue with his musings. Particularly in these moments, Thunder’s polished and poetic lyrics shine through. Expressing feelings of despair and alienation both from his surroundings and even himself, he nonetheless conveys a sense of stoic courage, an inner strength drawn from deep reflection and perceptiveness. His is a rare combination of lyrical and musical potency.
Before the song draws to a close, a startling modulation recaptures your attention as Thunder drifts off into a fantasy, prefacing a meandering interlude that places you in completely uncharted sonic territory. Gradually, as reality takes hold of the lyrics once again, familiar motifs return until we hear the refrain, now accompanied solely by a string ensemble. A choir exclaims one last time, and the echoes of voices fade to inaudibility. Silence has rarely felt so loud. Time to hit the replay button.
“Vicious Silence” is available on all major streaming platforms.
Written by Jacob Jahiel
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