Some artists don’t have to depend on the same frills that others do when making something impactful that fans can relate to, and if you’re looking for one of them in the flesh this September, you needn’t look much further than the work of one GaREE All. The new single from All, “Mother Tough,” is one-part homage and another part statement piece, with both sides of the track working to introduce us to a softer, more stately side of the very poet who created it. Don’t get me wrong, there’s been a lot of provocative spoken word singles making their way into the pop culture lexicon in the 20s, but, even with that said, to say he isn’t breaking the mold here just wouldn’t be accurate.
There’s a lot of emphasis on the contrast in this song, and in some ways, the biggest moments are even more communicative of the understated emotionality in the verses than any of All’s actual delivery is. This is a bold move on his part; after all, most of the material out of this scene employs an entirely different style of construction altogether, but it doesn’t sound out of place in the tracklist at all. There’s a diversity to how this guy applies himself to the recording process, and if my gut is right, he probably worked through a couple of different versions of “Mother Tough” long before ever committing himself to the one we hear on the record as well as in this release.
WATCH THE VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DxCpy9pyAQE
“Mother Tough” might indeed have been designed as an homage to start with, but if I’m being perfectly honest, I don’t think that it sounds or feels like it’s lacking in a unique aesthetical accent belonging to All and All alone. Yes, it would be disingenuous to say that he isn’t nodding to the conceptualism of others preceding him on more than one occasion here; from the midsection to the fever pitch and beyond, the whole track is steeped in the classic framework of something I would expect from a player like Bob Dylan, but there’s more of the man under the spotlight in its muscles than there is anyone else which, to be fair, isn’t very easy to do in a single like this one.
Fans of GaREE All who have been with him since his very first recordings are not going to be disappointed in what they find on “Mother Tough,” but by now, they’ve probably been anticipating this track’s release as a single for a while. From beginning to end, All pulls out all the stops to keep us engaged with every part of the music, and for an artist who is only now starting to get a lot of love from both sides of the dial, that’s something all of us can be impressed by. He’s doing incredible things with his gifts, and anyone who needs more of his charisma would do well to grab this single and its companion music video this summer as soon as humanly possible.
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