Destitution Meets Compassion in Holly Humberstone’s “Simple Tiger”


Properly, I spent the entire of final week underwater
Every so often, I might floor from my room
Received a first-class view from proper right here in my fortress
Received a staring contest going with the moon

Holly Humberstone’s “Simple Tiger” just isn’t missing in gradual, deliberate destitution.

The track begins with the form of disappointment that settles like humidity over a complete home, seeping into each room and dampening every floor. It turns kitchen chairs into funeral pews and vases into urns. Even the music itself is thickened by it, proper from the get-go – a lonely guitar is saturated with a refrain impact, and Humberstone’s layered vocals encompass the listener like a choir of ghosts.

There’s a bunch of purple lockets from my mom
They complement the pile of soiled garments
No marvel I’ve acquired 5 missed calls from Lauren
Guess it’s her job to fret, I suppose

A good friend of mine gave me a reputation for writing like this: micro-lyricism. Give a rapid-fire listing of your environment, point out a number of vaguely melancholy occasions, and get overly particular about particulars and names that appear unimportant. It’s a classy technique of songwriting as of late, popularized by Phoebe Bridgers and her ilk. It might probably come throughout as lazy and even manipulative at instances.

However man, does it get the job accomplished, particularly right here.

By the tip of the second verse, the listener can’t assist however discover themselves proper within the room together with her. The spell has accomplished its work. The pre-chorus comes and goes, and the loneliness is palpable.

However then, within the refrain, one thing occurs to separate this from a normal sad-indie-girl track. And that is why I’m writing about it.

Calm down now, simple tiger
It’ll all be over quickly
Put your toes up on the dashboard
And we’ll journey this out collectively

The verses describe one thing worse than disappointment. They describe loneliness. For 2 stanzas, we have been pressured to observe as Humberstone remoted herself in her room, ignoring telephone calls and laundry duties.

However the refrain introduces a brand new voice, and it’s the voice of compassion (within the truest etymological sense of the phrase com-passion, to undergo with.) The temper isn’t lightened, however one thing even higher has occurred.

It’s shared.

The emotion boils, till it spills over within the bridge:

Let all of it out, my dearest one
Let all of it out, it’s alright, my dearest

That is what offers the track its energy. The lyrics are easy, however the sentiment is as advanced as life itself. Destitution has a essential position to play, however it isn’t given the ultimate phrase. Within the midst of a tough night time on the finish of a tough week, Humberstone lets all of it out, and is met with compassion. It’s not a tragic track for the sake of disappointment; it’s a tragic track for the sake of relationship.



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