In troubled times, music continues to provide a reprieve. The NYC-area group Jim Andralis & the Syntonics drop their new album My Beautiful Enemy on March 27, and ahead of release, catch an exclusive first listen below to their emotionally intimate ballad “Oh My God.”
The track hinges on careful but lush-feeling piano playing accompanied by soulful, emotionally resonant, and deeply affecting dual vocals. After about a minute featuring just those elements, softly strummed guitar melody comes in with garnishes that feel slight but perfectly suited, like what sound like some tambourine shakes. Ultimately, the band don’t feel like they need a whole lot to communicate the emotional resonance of their melodies. Like the most classic Americana turned into a thoroughly accessible, immersive experience, the melodically expressed longing for an emotional reprieve that’s carefully featured in this song captures attention all on its own. The front-and-center melodies land powerfully.
“Lord have mercy, pray for me,” the dual vocalists sing towards the conclusion of the song. They quickly follow that up with the simple but piercingly poignant observation: “Oh, my God — I’m free.” It’s a straightforward feeling of longing and release, and the melodic, solid songwriting-expressed stability of the cathartic message feels only more relevant.
Check out the song below! Their new album features an 11-song “exploration of interpersonal and internal ruptures,” those close to the band have explained. It’s the group’s second release, which together follow earlier solo work from Andralis. Check out the band’s website (at this link) and Bandcamp page (at this link) for more.
Photo thanks to Bob Krasner