The first singe from Ben Howard’s new album I Forget Where We Were is the melancholic End of the Affair. Part bleak, lonely ballad and part uplifting, relaxing acoustic, End of the Affair is lyrically, texturally and harmonically soothing.
The harsh twang of the acoustic guitars sadly cuts through the atmospheric silence, emphasising and punctuating Ben’s breathy vocals. Sparse strings and piano start to add a new texture to the track before it all falls back away to silence.
Then the song returns, not melencholy and bleakly alone, but much more upbeat, rhythmic and percussive. The drums pound and drive the song along, and there is some beautiful guitar work going on as the vocals swirl in and out of the mix.
Wile it is a nicely constructed and performed single, End of the Affair may not be to everyone’s taste. It is primarily slower, more atmospheric and driven my words emotions, something that not everyone may appreciate. Still, if judges and appreciated on its many artistic merits it is an excellent track. The two-parts-of-the-same-song aspect is a nice touch and adds something different that is rarely seen nowadays in a song.
You can but End of the Affair and the new album I Forget Where We Were from iTunes and Amazon as well as Ben Howard’s official website.