Utah-native Ritt Momney has done it again. He came out with new music, and, as always, it blew me away.
If you haven’t heard of Ritt Momney, what are you doing? How can you negate the cleverness, the satire, and the endearing quality of the spoonerism of Utah Senator Mitt Romney’s name?
Anyway, let’s get to it, shall we?
The underlying beat of this song, a titillating techno thrum that foments an air of uncertainty, an air of eeriness…and, yet, a looming sense of want, of desire, of unfinished business. “Call me a ghost,” Ritt Momney tells us. And what is a ghost, if not an entity stuck in a world of unfinished business?
There’s an angst in this song, one that reminds me of Momney’s song “Young Adult,” an ode to those years in high school, book-ended by uncertainty, out-of-control hormones, and angst.
“I halfway dissolved/ I’m half dead/ More than phantom but less than a man,” Momney serenades us, and we can feel this hermitization, the angst and pain, and when he’s “halfway surprised at the touch of her hand,” we can see this regression from reality.
But still there persists some sort of guilt, some regret, the sort that everyone deals with yet has overtaken Momney’s moment. “Throw it away and start it all over,” he pleads; start everything over if he could, this ghost would.
And in the end, we are reminded that these are momentary musings, ones that are not separated from reality but deeply ingrained in its verity. “Lift me through a broken plane/ My open wound, my escalator,” this chorus concludes, and if nothing, we notice the acceptance of such sinusoidal moments that perhaps persist but are inseparable from life itself.
“Set The Table” (feat. Claud)
(This single came out in February, but Spotify grouped it with Escalator and the next song in the review, “Not Around.”)
The upbeat sound of this song gives me energy. It makes me want to go on a run even if it’s humid and way too hot. It makes me want to clean, and I’m not a fan. However, that upbeat, lively music contrasts with what Ritt Momney is telling us.
“And every time we set the table, I flip it over/ And if you’re willing and you’re able, let’s start it over,” rings the chorus. “With all the things I have, satisfaction’s not one.”
This song doesn’t pretend to be something it’s not; in fact, it’s measured contrast presents such dichotomy perfectly.
Does our narrator have everything? Why is this narrator not happy? Perhaps there’s an expectation, material or otherwise, that they feel should make them happy…but it doesn’t.
This song is a rebellion, an insurgency against the material requirements for liberty and the pursuit of happiness. This song is a rebuke of propriety and standard, which is why, in the end, “if you’re willing and you’re able, let’s start it over.”
I think we could call this song many things: an elegy to a foregone relationship or the preordained epitaph for a to-be-buried relationship that has decayed after many, many months or years or however long apart.
But not only is it putting to bed and saying goodbye to this relationship; it is also reminiscing on what sparked such feelings. “I picked you up from the airport/ Your smile didn’t feel the same.” There something chill-inducing about those two lines, about how the anticipation of something and how the actual event never lives up to those moments that precede it.
Especially when you come together with a love, or a like or a whatever, that you can now see has been snuffed out by the trials of growing separately.
The narrator recalls that singing no longer brings a smile to their lover’s face the way it did when he first sang to them, and that “I feel like it’s been a while/ Since your light shone on my account.”
But then, the narrator doesn’t quite seem ready to say goodbye to this relationship, or whatever fraying ropes they keep to support this waning flame.
Then, Ritt Momney takes us on a ride, on a slow devolution from a dreamy sound, a reminscence, to a lullaby-ish tune, singing, “But when you’re not around/ I turn into something/ I’m not lost or found/ I’m neither, I’m nothing,” as though they cannot be without this lover, as though their identities are inextricably interwoven.
“Hear me yelling out loud/ My love went away, hear me shout,” the narrator finally admits, as the lullaby morphs into a rockish outro, a cathartic farewell to this relationship. Ritt Momney stands at the shore, waving goodbye to a memory lost in the horizon, in the light of a setting sun, until it’s all gone in the wavy conclusion of this song.
LISTEN TO RITT MOMNEY, YOU GUYS! I can’t stress this enough. Diverse sounds, lyrical fun, and absolute musicality. Ritt Momney has yet to disappoint me.