When Stephen James Orr teamed up with Gisun and Anh Phung, he brought the feeling of a balmy summer to our ears through ‘Within You‘. Now, with his single ‘Wake Up’ also featuring Gisun and Beth Silver, he is tackling the themes of grief and loss. With lyrics that are open to interpretation, they consider the way we all address loss and digest the difficult feelings that come with grief.
The ambiguity of the single creates a poignancy that truly highlights the power of Orr’s musicality. With his blend of sound, he touches on emotions that are universal yet felt differently by each of us. Leaving listeners with a lot to think about, Orr sinks tendrils of consciousness into his music that linger long after the track has ended.
The understated acoustic opening of ‘Wake Up’ has you floating in that moment between being asleep and awake. Through the music, you are treated to the first soft light of dawn as it hits your eyes while you wake. Beth Silver’s cello adds a depth to the soundscape that meets the acoustic guitar for a smooth flow as the single continues. It is a very tender melody that touches on the darker themes of the track while lifting you into a lighter sense. Through the melody, you acknowledge the sadness that rests in the lower tones of the cello while moving to the light and ease that comes through with the acoustic guitar.
While the melody creates some of the emotional journey of the track, it is Gisun’s vocals that offer the path of the journey. Her voice is delicate in the opening as she draws you out of sleep and into the pale light of the sonic dawn. There is a touch of ambiguity to the lyrics that allow you to interpret what they are saying in your own way. They can be taken as the loss of someone or the end of a relationship. Regardless of how they are taken, Gisun crafts them into the journey of addressing grief and loss while moving to something happier. Through her performance, you accept the pain of loss and move on while knowing that the person is always with you.
Stephen James Orr teams up with Gisun and Beth Silver for a touching and moving confrontation with grief and loss in ‘Wake Up’. There is a delicate tone woven into the melody and vocals that eases the pain of loss. This helps you move to the light of acceptance and understanding that shines through the single and leaves you feeling at peace.