Remember the ballads that Whitney Houston, Taylor Dayne, and Mariah Carey would belt-out back in the 90s – those ballads that started with vocals emotionally low telling a heartfelt, honest, story and then slowly climbing to a chorus that blew us away? Well, we have another one with “Before I Cry” by national Award-Winning recording artist, choreographer, and dancer, Jennifer Mlott.
The track starts with a dominating piano, light soundscapes, and synths giving the track a kind of dark edginess which is a prelude to the sadness felt by the lyrical message of a relationship that is frail and heading towards failure due to lack of communication. Mlott sings: try and hear me before I cry /hurry up hurry up before I lose you / hurry up hurry up before you love me too / hurry up hurry up before I change my mind.
Mlott gives a great performance on this track and presents a perfect dual styling with her vocal range – she delves low and then soars like a bird which also illustrates that dual emotional aspect of a love that is filed highs and lows. With Mlott’s vocal execution, you can also feel the yearning to be heard, the anticipation to save the passion, and the willingness to forgive. All classic signs of a creative and talented writer and vocalist.
Another highpoint of this track is its production.
The choice to keep the music and mastering effects at a minimal on “Before I Cry” was splendid as it helps the listening audience to truly hear the HUMAN and not just computer-generated (CG) vocalizations. In 2019, we are bombarded with tracks that are loaded with CG vocal FX, synths, and various instruments that sometimes tend to crowd the overall production blurring the vocals and the message of a song. Relying on CG techniques as treatments in production are fine on up-tempo tracks, as it brings the hype and make for great dance cuts, but this is not the case with most ballads. Other than the piano, soundscapes, and synths, "Before I Cry" additonally includes: violins, soft electronic percussions, some light backing adlibs and FX, and a voice – that’s it.
“Before I Cry” features a production that allows for Mlott’s message and voice to take center stage, so you truly can walk away with Mlott’s vocals in your head instead of the bottom beat.
When a Country-Pop song tells the story of someone pleading to give love every try before the cry, it deserves a listen. “Before I Cry” released this month. Real music is back and it’s memorable!