Review: "Until I End Up Dead" - Dream
It's pretty common to think about what it's going to look like when we die. Not for us, but for everyone losing us. "Until I End Up Dead," the latest single from Dream, approaches the subject from a similar internal projection. It's sound calls to mind dance-pop of the late-2000's, but where that era felt eternally and consequentially locked in the present moment "Until I End Up Dead" haunts the space from a place of impermanence. Warped synth loops illuminate the melody like glow-in-dark paint over a familiar mural. Vocal delay over his voice singing the titular phrase is like an afterimage. The single conveys passion through the colorful dance-pop, but lets the lightest rays of somberness filter through.
The most effective lyrics lean on Dream's specificity to convey feelings. The singer-songwriter has an interesting way of writing around a subject. The song primarily engages with the loss of human life at two different points in his life, but Dream focuses his lens on the peripheral details. Rather than distracting or blurring from the thematic center, this approach serves to enhance it. The perspective of youth—experiencing so much for the very first time—is neatly packed into the memory of "cryin' the first time I ever wore a suit." The closeness to his present experiences with loss implies a sort of reverberation, like he's only now coming to understand what it meant to him before. There are suggestions at internal dread ("now I fear that one day I'm gonna disappear"), but their acknowledgement is sung with acceptance and not turmoil. "Until I End Up Dead" purges itself of nihilistic instincts. Instead, it's about living life with the knowledge of death. Knowing the inevitable—experiencing the inevitable in loved ones means nothing if we don't make the moments before worthwhile.
2021 saw internet content creator, Dream, reintroduce himself as a musical artist, generating millions of streams. The Florida-born singer-songwriter takes particular pride in his modern storytelling, which first gained him a following on youtube. His love for narrative originally inspired him towards a future writing, though no one could predict the unorthodox avenues he would bring his passion down. "Until I End Up Dead" is his first single in 2 years, after his initial release of three singles "Roadtrip,"Mask," and "Change My Clothes." He will be releasing more singles as a part of a series for Republic Records in the near future.
Written By Andy M.