An Annotated Listening Music Review

An Annotated Listening: “Fly”, by Jessica

Fly (Feat. Fabolous)

+ So, should I beat myself up now or wait for y’all to do it later? Of course, I speak directly to old school McRoth’s Residence readers here. If your memory hasn’t betrayed you, you will remember the extent to which I used to drag Jessica’s vocals and singing when she was a part of SNSD. I wasn’t the nicest to her, let’s be honest, but I’ve come around.

Do I think Jessica will ever be an impressive singer? Nope. Did I care to criticize her singing in her debut single? Not right off the bat.

For all its flaws, and I think there are many, “Fly” ultimately wins big for its clear vision and style that Jessica carries in earnest. There’s a gracefulness to the melodies that strum away at my heartstrings, which I think is more songwriting than Jessica’s vocal performance. In fact, I love how much heart there is in this song. “Fly” is a pretty basic pop tune, but Jessica manages to deliver a warm and fussy listening experience that left me, and I’m sure a lot of you, with a positive impression. It’s what keeps bringing me back, and I totally don’t hate myself for it.

If there was anyone I’d advise Jessica to seek out for top notch production and musical input on her next go around, I would recommend fetching MisterWives. Take a second to listen to “Hurricane” after you’ve replayed “Fly” a thousand times, and you’ll hear what could have been.

The songs aren’t identical, but they’re similar enough in tone, and it’s the quality of the chorus in “Hurricane” in particular that I would have loved to hear “Fly” accomplish. Jessica deserved a soaring production, massive soundscape, and above all else crisp vocal treatment. It’s the production quality (or lack there of) that holds “Fly” back from ascending to uplifting pop greatness, which it hovers very close to, but doesn’t quite get there in the end for me.

I know I’m asking a lot from a relatively simple song, but I think the blueprint is so good, that it could have been done so much better if it were in the right hands.

In short: Jessica doesn’t fully take off on “Fly”, but the effort is noteworthy. The melodies are fluffy and memorable with an uplifting message that never fails to warm my insides.

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