“Here to You” by Lavendine

Culture, Music

Blurring the line between traditional gospel, pop-flavored CCM, country and folk music has been a popular trend in the last two years, but I wouldn’t necessarily count the new single “Here to You” from Lavendine as the result of a movement within their scene. On the contrary, there’s simply too much emotion and passion behind the lyrics in this track for me to value external influences very highly – it’s all about Lavendine showcasing the soul of their artistry in this single, and from a critical perspective, I think that “Here to You” might be their greatest identity piece yet.

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As I assumed they would be, the lyrics in this song are uplifting and not preachy, approaching us from a first-person level that doesn’t come across even the least bit self-righteous in tone. One of the elements that made me get into Lavendine not too long ago is their ability to relate really big statements to their audience without weighing down a verse with a lot of biblical references; they can utilize free poeticism fiercely here while still connecting a story to the faith they’re espousing in every lyric they sing. You could learn to do what they do, but personally, I think the talent they have for delivering it is one of a kind.

The melodies in this piece feel like the biggest priority to Lavendine from beginning to end, but I wouldn’t go so far as to call the percussive componentry soft behind the guitar and bass parts. There’s certainly a lot of room for the drums to get bigger if they wanted them to be, but I feel like these singers prefer the atmospheric backdrop to the tighter arrangement. Who could blame them? With their pipes, they can manage to own just about any stage, no matter the band behind them.

This mixing is so even that it’s kind of surprising to me that the vocals can sound as meaty as they do, but conversely, I can also say that I don’t feel like we’re being robbed of any muscle from the instrumentation at all. There’s some serious punch to this chorus that starts with the singers and trickles down to the bassline, and while that might not be the way that a lot of other artists are recording their music this autumn, this might be the reason we’re talking about Lavendine and not them.

I’m looking forward to hearing more from this group as they continue their professional odyssey, and I think that when compared with the older material Lavendine has released, most listeners are going to agree when I say they’re sounding better than ever before in this release. They’ve got a handle on exactly the type of musicians they want to be, and yet they’re still fluidly operating off of a blueprint that lets them navigate the murky waters between gospel and country music with relative ease, never sounding like they’re uncertain of their true sound. “Here to You” is a step up for their already decent discography, and it’s worthy of a second listen this October.

Claire Uebelacker

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