Spencer – Want U Back

Want U Back, the title-track from a three-song sequence from Spencer ends with a strange, undulating pulse on a synth. The progression appears to end abruptly, but it doesn’t end. There’s an echo of the tone – it hovers there. The volume is reduced; this isn’t a simple result of over-stretched reverb. It’s an audible memory of longing. It’s a simple device, and an almost throw-away moment in the scale of things, but it speaks volumes to the sensibility of an artist, and his approach to craft. The song is about longing, memory, and desire – and the self-produced EP brings content into form. It’s a tiny grain of brilliance. The song craves to continue.

Back in January we heard from Spencer when he shared a surreal/hyper-real visual for his track ‘Open Wide’. It was a track that dealt with vulnerability, and explored an intimate scale of purpose in a man’s life. The track built glitches and grit into a string of smooth jazz progressions, and old school hip hop patterns. On Want U Back, Spencer reaches further into the intimate frame. He draws himself in detail, and shows a man closer to his truth than before.

The title track is sandwiched between two others. ‘bbybbybby’, and ‘Heat of Summer’. The first track is a direct address of a man’s mixed emotion. He wants this, but he also wants that. Basically there’s a dislocate between ambition and object of affection. The track ends abruptly, and in the short runtime of just over a minute we also learn about the artist’s commitment to his work. The tune is beautiful, it draws on a kind of naturalism that easy jazz allows. Again, it’s the glitch and lyrical disconnect that brings it into the ‘now’ and makes this a forward-facing moment.

Describing I Want U Back, Spencer said this; “I made these in my basement earlier this year while messing around with some chords. It was right after I chilled with this girl almost every day over winter break. Right when she went back to school I started writing ‘Want U Back’, the melody and theme made sense almost immediately. It’s a bit different then the other music I’ve released before but I’m excited to show some different sides to my production and voice.”

Closing the EP is a rolling drum pattern. A question of what is real. A stolen heart, and the dislocation between head and heart. This feels like a bare-knuckle love song. Production is raw, and so a bass that could bring warmth is overlooked by the desire to address urgency and tenderness. Again, Spencer shows why he’s one to watch.


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