Veronika Utri is telling the story of two people who are leaving each other and all the emotions this brings in her EP If You Leave. The four-track EP chronologically tells the tale of a relationship ending and the turbulence each person feels. While broken relationships is a common theme in music, Utri uses an amazing storytelling vibe throughout the EP to keep you hooked and give the theme a new lease on life.
Utri was not looking to create an EP when she wrote the tracks that now make up one. However, once she noticed that there was a theme to the songs, she decided to put them together into this wonderful story.
The EP opens with ‘Promise Me That’ which also opens the relationship of the story. Through the lyrics, you are drawn into the start of the relationship and the warm emotions this brings. Utri’s vocals carry the warmth and adoration of the early days of a relationship. While the chorus considers the end of the relationship, it is done as a hypothetical with a feeling in her voice that this is something that could never happen. This turns as the single continues with the vocals getting a resigned vibe as it becomes clear the relationship is over. This is a great introduction to the story and really sets the tone of the EP.
‘Touching Me’ brings a very different vibe to the opening track with an almost neon seduction resting in the melody. The floating flow of the vocals in the first track gives way to something more passionate. This enhances the lyrics which take us to the point where the couple is no longer together but still can’t keep their hands off each other. The arrangement of the melody has tapping tones that give way to sultry vibrations before beats that pound against you come in. The darker feeling of this song is a wonderful contrast to the opening track.
The piano line that opens ‘Cigarette’ combines with the humming vocal line to create an almost dreamy feeling. When Utri enters, her voice is a soft layer that pulls you to it while adding to the dreaminess of the track. There is a light touch of wistfulness to the song as the lyrics consider trying to bring someone back into your life even if it is just in your imagination. There is a great interplay between the longing for reconciliation and the understanding that this will never be. It creates a bittersweet feeling that rests in your chest.
The EP comes to an end with ‘Don’t Miss Me’ which has an electronic dance pop vibe to the opening beats. The movement of the melodic elements makes you think of lights flashing past as you drive through a city at night. Utri’s vocals are emotive on this track as she looks back on things you used to do with someone but there is no tinge of nostalgia. The harmonisations on the track add a depth that is wonderful. This is the perfect song to bring the story of the EP to an end as it fills you with the freedom of moving on and remembering the good times without a sense of yearning.
Veronika Utri tells the story of a relationship from start to finish and fills you with the emotions of breaking up and moving on in If You Leave. Each track has a unique vibe from the floating adoration of the opening song to the freedom of moving on in the closing. The varying arrangements are a testament to Utri’s writing abilities while the emotions that wash through you highlight her emotive prowess.