Brandi Carlile – “Dying Day”
Equally influenced by Patsy Cline and Radiohead, Brandi Carlile blends country, pop, folk, and rock and counts Elton John as one of her fans. At only 28 years old, she’s already worked with the likes of T Bone Burnett and Rick Rubin, who produced her third full length album, 2009′s Give Up the Ghost. Written by bandmate Tim Hanseroth, the album’s second single, “Dying Day,” is all about the loneliness of life on the road, or, as Hanseroth words it, a life spent “chasing miles through the nighttime making tracks/With no time for looking back/To the place where I belong.” Sure, it’s melancholy, but, set to chugging acoustic guitar and strings, it’s also pretty folk-rocking.
The song has a catchy chorus that unfortunately includes tired lyrics about missing you and just wanting to kiss you and being far away from you but promising to stay true. Despite the occasional unmemorable turn of phrase, Carlile’s performance is both haunting and beautiful. Here she sounds a little like a cross between Patty Griffin and Kathleen Edwards as she flings herself into the lyric, softly singing “Now I’m lost in a sea of sunken dreams/While the sound of drunken screams echoes in the night/But I know all of this will come to pass/And I’ll be with you at last, forever by your side” before howling the chorus like a woman possessed. Turns out that a voice like that can make even “How I miss you/And I just want to kiss you” sound brand new.
Though chances are it won’t garner loads of airplay, “Dying Day” is a song that’s poppy enough for mass consumption (it was a Starbucks Pick of the Week in early December) and rootsy enough to appeal to the No Depression crowd; look for it—and her spot on 2010′s Lilith Fair lineup among artists like Emmylou Harris and Miranda Lambert—to draw a few more bodies into Carlile’s growing fanbase.
Listen: Brandi Carlile – “Dying Day”
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