Author: Briana Ellison
British musician Rationale released his second single, titled “Palms,” on June 3. The song, which is off his upcoming debut self-titled album, to be released on September 23, follows the January release of the single “Something for Nothing.”
Rationale was born in Zimbabwe but raised in London, and perfectly mixes alternative and pop music. The beginning beat mixes a funky guitar chord with an electro beat that sounds as though it would fit perfectly in a commercial.
His voice, which sounds as though it would break easily, is unbelievably strong. Rationale has ridiculous control over his vocals as moves confidently from singing the verses in sultry, low, tip-toeing vocals to the chorus, where he truly allows his vocal range to shine. His voice drops only slightly in tone but grows as he belts it out, layered over his own voice in a higher octave.
The confidence that grows throughout Rationale’s vocals is mirrored in his lyrics. “Palms” is about removing one’s walls and being completely open with the person you’re with. As his vocal confidence grows, as does Rationale’s confidence in the relationship he’s detailing; by the bridge and final chorus, he’s belting out the lyrics, his voice full and proud.
His vocals and lyrics are beautifully supported by the song’s music and beats. It’s hard to describe the electro beat that lies underneath the aforementioned guitar and the simple bass that backs the chorus’ ending runs.
The beat is mesmerizing: Sounding as if it’s gradually building up to something without reaching it, leaving the listener with an oddly satisfying feeling of incompleteness. This isn’t meant to be negative, as the beat’s impression completes the song and Rationale’s lyrics, if not itself.
Thus, Rationale’s “Palms” is a haunting and exquisite song about building confidence. Rationale is a new artist, yet one with such control over and insight into his voice that it’s unbelievable. This disbelief is only furthered by his raw, mature and straightforward lyrics, making the wait until his album drops way too long.