Written by Imani Wj Wright
How often are we faced with things that are one sided? The climate can be scorching hot, and on the other hand, the climate can be frigid cold. At times we feel elated, at times we feel down. After strong deliberation , I won’t use the easy “up” and “down” example, you get the point.
Duality is a component of our every day existence. Vineyard Cries displays this inevitability in his hip hop/popesque single titled, Wolf. Wolf is a multifaceted track that incorporates pretty solid rap flows, and some fairly decent singing. During the opening seconds of this dualistic experience, there is an automatic suspense that blankets you. There is a suppressed and hushed piano sound surrounded by old school boom bap drum patterns that are just as hushed. These fleeting 10 seconds subtly but effectively set the path for Vineyard Cries’ story-telling.
Throughout the story, Cries continuously refers to this character/person that he is watching from afar. He begins to relay their actions to the audience directly during the verses, and seems to be referring to him metaphorically during the hook as the “wolf.” Not only is there a segue from reality to metaphor, Cries’ also goes from straight-forward rapping to minimalistic singing. This transformation changes Cries’ persona from “You better listen!” to “please listen, you need to hear this.”
There is a hidden somber on this track hiding behind uplifting drums and percussion. You can get lost in this deceiving juxtaposition. I’ve listened to this song many times and I still have not had one consistent feeling develop from this track. I felt energetic, sad, remorseful, and inspired – all in that order. That’s what keeps bringing me back, I’m still trying to figure out where this auditory journey will take me next, there’s an indescribable excitement in finding songs that can take you many places.
I was highly impressed by Cries’ ability to convey a story not just through lyrics, but through conscious vocal decisions. You feel a cry (no pun intended) in his vocal delivery during the hook. Towards the latter half of the song, he begins to sing in a manner that resembles howling. This decision is exceptional as Cries’ asserts in the hook: “The wolf discards his robes and howls to the moon, to assume, she writes the fortunes of the boy with the blues.” Just like a great book, or a great movie, Cries’ brings everything full circle.
This song has great potential to move the masses with its memorable melodies and hard hitting instruments. Take the ride with me and many others by giving this track a listen. We might not end up at the same destination, but I’m sure we’ll enjoy the trip. In the meantime... Stay Virtuous, Stay Progressive, Stay Idealistic
Top Strength: Phenomenally layered storytelling.
Top Critique: More reverb on the singing.
Vineyard Cries on Instagram: @Vineyardcries