Friday, February 25, 2022

Heartbreak Is Brought To Life On The Emotional ‘Dear Friends’

After studying Acoustical Engineering at The University of Southampton, Jon Sandman found himself working for Solid State Logic, a legendary analogue and digital audio console manufacturer. 

In his world as a musician, the singer-songwriter from Oxford has also found time to be a member of the alternative band Pylon Heights, and Jon and Abbie, an indie-folk band that the duo formed during the pandemic. With such a wealth of experience, it’s no surprise that ‘Dear Friends’ is a 4-minute sonic masterpiece, encompassing the pain and futility of life after heartbreak. 

Opening with an instant flash of guitar riffs that feel both alive yet distant, we are soon joined by Sandman’s trademark understated vocals. The subdued nature of his voice only adds weight to the pain he tries to convey. As he sings “When I am missing you so much the marrow in my bones aches” you truly feel how the heartbreak that he has endured has added to the tone of his voice, ultimately making the track feel even more emotive and moving. 

The second verse is accompanied by a rolling drum fill, which in turn drives the song forward before the track crescendos into a cacophony of drums and distorted guitars backed by ethereal vocals. It’s an excellent ending to the song, and it’s almost as if Sandman is breaking out of the shackles that the heartbreak has caused him, allowing his feelings to come pouring out.  

‘Dear Friends’ is not just a tale of heartbreak, but it is also a note to those who are affected by the actions of someone in the throes of the death of a relationship. Of his friends he may have lost, Sandman sings “They won’t come back”, but if the singer continues to enhance his reputation with tracks as heart-wrenching yet fulfilling as this, then the listener surely will. 

James Ogden 
Image: ‘Dear Friends’ Official Single Cover 

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