By: Eric Reyes
June 15, 2021
A song that plays over and over in a lounge where long-lost, broken-hearted lovers lock eyes one last time across a dancefloor full of people they could have been if they’d just held on.
Half-drunk glasses of too-bitter wine and too-strong whiskey, if ever there were such a thing. Cigarettes dropping inch-long bricks of ash onto snow-white tablecloths as the smoker stares off into the middle distance, the song’s words lost to space and time but their emotion cutting straight to their heart, indelibly wounding emotions thought long buried. A light imprint of lipstick on a monogrammed cloth napkin, ‘I miss you, just like you promised’ written in quick, light handwriting beside it. Lighting that borders on a fiery amber and a jaundiced yellow, the difference being where you sit and how teary-eyed you are.
That’s ‘Fireflies’ by powerhouse artist Abbie Thomas.
I swear I had written at least three bittersweet ‘loved and lost, and better for it’ romances by the beautiful, smoldering end of this wonderful track. Like I had tears in my eyes by the climactic 2-minute mark. And that amazing crescendo of her blazingly bright vocals and bandstand instrumentals dried those very same tears and straightened my collar, telling me it’s alright. It’s all alright. Even if it isn’t, it’s going to be. It’s alright.
Her voice is so full of a husky warmth and light that swells in your chest and threatens to burst. There’s a feeling of a grievous wound just beneath the surface, a loss of something important whose loss, in that funny way pain manages to throw the rules of emotion to the wind, creates its own closure, its own resolution. Power and beauty. A rare combo. And one even rarer to experience in so full and complete a package as it is here.
If I had a million dollars, I’d spend it all to make a music video to capture the opening paragraph of this review, to really drive home how affecting this song is, how full its impression. And I’d still be a few dollars short of doing it justice.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I suddenly have the urge to run through the rain to try and stop someone I love, and who I know still loves me, from getting on that bus back East and make this crazy thing called ‘us’ work. For once.
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