Of the stages of grief, acceptance is by far the hardest point to reach. It requires letting go of a reality that is no longer possible and coming to terms with the loss of something important. Acceptance isn’t something that can be consciously decided upon. Despite knowing it’s against our best interests, despite wanting to move on, the only way to remove the last piece of us living in denial is through time. Enduring our new reality is the only way to grow towards acceptance. In his new single “Yours” singer-songwriter John Townsend (or just “Townsend”) is beginning this process. In the wake of a breakup Townsend is reeling, wishing he could tear himself out of the past but unable to overcome the nostalgia. This lushly arranged track is Townsend grieving his loss, trying to find his way through his new life.
“Yours” has a distinct singer-songwriter vibe. Clearly Townsend’s first addition while writing the song, the acoustic guitar is by far the most prominent instrument throughout the piece. Alternating between arpeggiated fingerpicking and strumming, the guitar sets the tone for the intensity of the song as a whole, controlling the song as it builds and releases tension. In this way it acts as an anchor, the only constant outside of Townsend’s voice, giving the listener something in which to ground themselves through the song's ebbs and flows. The chorus is by far the most dense section, featuring vocal harmonies and synth pads, but still dominated by the guitar. It gives way, though, to an exceedingly sparse post-chorus, featuring only legato strums of the guitar. This decrease in momentum leads perfectly into the second verse, which is just as broken down as the first, and gives Townsend space to build towards the release of the second chorus. After a far more luxuriously orchestrated reprisal of the post-chorus, once again everything but Townsend and his guitar drops out, leaving him to restate the chorus one final time in its most simple state.
John Townsend began releasing music in 2019, and since then has refused to be contained to one genre. He works almost exclusively off emotion, not trying to emulate any sound by the ones he hears in his head. Outside of his own releases, Townsend is also an avid songwriter, with an extensive collection of songs to which he’s contributed. His following has grown steadily in the years since his debut, and his songwriting and production talent give no indication of that stopping. With two singles plus a host of songwriting credits in 2022, Townsend is clearly someone to keep tabs on as his career develops.
Written By Liam Dun