‘Tricking us throughout, ‘Devil’ is crammed full of musical treats.’
Re-intro to Ffion Rebecca:
It’s safe to say that it has been a busy time for Ffion since I introduced you to her only a few weeks ago. Back then, I reviewed her jazz influenced EP ‘Love Away from Home.’ Beautifully written, every track made it a strong, yet understated debut. Since then, Ffion has been featured on Cambridge 105 Radio and set release dates for three other tracks. Aptly titled for its Halloween release date, ‘Devil’ sees Ffion’s sound head in a different, more fiery direction.
Featured Track: Devil
Dramatic and anticipation-filled from the start, ‘Devil,’ is a world away from Ffion’s musical home. Gone is the intimacy to be replaced by a no-nonsense, statement making atmosphere. To say this is unexpected, would be a huge understatement, but to say it’s successful, would be an even bigger one. It may be a completely different sound, but it’s immediately evident that it’s just as incredible.
Signaling the start of the track, the track’s title gently rings out above a more ambient accompaniment. Straightaway the new style is established. Re-enforcing this further, pounding, war like drums echo around. Theatrical in nature, it grabs your attention for all the right reasons. Accompaniment set, Ffion’s soaring vocal begins the storytelling. Filled with sublime uses of glissandi, and extremes of range, you find yourself questioning how this track, and indeed Ffion herself, isn’t on more people’s radar.
On reaching the chorus, Ffion’s main vocal continues to soar to new heights. Alongside this, the atmosphere changes and with the removal of the pounding war-like drums, a more regular pattern kicks in. Combined with ringing guitar chords and echoing multi-tracked vocals, the track begins to hint at ‘mainstream.’ However, in a wonderful piece of musical trickery, just as it gets going, it moves on to the second verse.
Building on the sound of the chorus, the accompaniment maintains its driving nature. However, while it would be easy to return to the same setting as verse one, this isn’t the case and as the previous drumming patterns merge together, a real sense of momentum takes hold. Pushing this further, rhythmically echoing marimba and melodic organ interludes begin to interweave among each other. It’s an incredible sound and combined with Ffion’s magical vocal, it perfectly highlights how much of a step up this is. However, while this full-on accompaniment is retained in the following chorus, on reaching the bridge, we get an unexpected reminder of Ffion’s previous sound.
Stripped back, the vocal connects with us on a different level to anywhere else in the track. Soft and delicate, it really feels like Ffion is speaking to you. It’s a rather touching moment, and initially set against more laid back sounds, it beautifully reflects how much Ffion is influenced by her musical roots. Perfectly connecting both sides of her sound, the second half of the bridge gradually re-introduces the earlier accompanying elements before reaching full-on and percussion led versions of the chorus. There’s no doubt about it, ‘Devil’ may well be full of tricks, but it’s certainly a musical treat.