Reviews

Where I Am – Breathe Band

When I first heard ‘Where I Am’, the piano intro stretched my heart sideways. Mournful guitar chords then augmented the sadness and when the accordion and violin arrived, I fell to my knees sobbing – in front of me, a sputtering campfire flickered shadows across the vardo.

Of course, I was really still in my kitchen but then Meg’s smoky voice drifted in and transported me once more to the Celtic wilderness, a setting sun turning the emerald hills purple.

‘Where I Am’, by Surrey-based Breathe Band, is beautiful in its melancholy. The band say it’s: “a song about coming full circle, after navigating emotional circles and changes in life,” and the refrain, “Right to be the one to be wrong right now,” is tinged with pain but dripping in resilience – a recognition that strength comes from within and it is upon this that we must rely.

Released as a 4-version EP, each track spotlights different aspects of the mix. Singer Meg, says that, having recorded the track, they recruited piano player Matt Black to join in. It certainly works.

In the full band version, singer Meg seems to be trying to haul herself out of the speaker, such is the anguish in the vocal, but Matt lures her back. Another version strips us back to just vocals and piano, which introduces the voice into the cavernous emptiness. Such is the power of Matt’s piano, the band decided to do a full band instrumental too, which showcases the tickles that structure this soundtrack.

In the full band version, the final verse takes us from sorrow to optimism and despite the mournfulness, by the end, an uplift leaves us with hope. As I recall my imaginary horse-drawn nomads, the lilting strings provide them too with inspiration.

It’s a yes from me.

Matt Dolan

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