Michael Rainwood bears his soul via his all-new single
Michael Rainwood bears his soul to us in his all-new single “I’ll Never Be Alone Again,” and the depth of his evocative spirit isn’t limited to his lyrics exclusively. Rainwood gets bold with us in this song; he grips us with a fluttering acoustic guitar that is layered over a synthesized melody and a striking percussion that is so understated it’s nearly translucent. In the center of the melodic storm is his enigmatic words, which leave a trail of heartwarming affection in their wake. “I’ll Never Be Alone Again” is a ballad about finding strength and solidarity in Christ, but it’s so much more than your standard gospel/pop crossover track. It’s emotional, riddled with vulnerable statements and framed by a stylish production that really magnifies Rainwood’s sterling vocals, which are as memorable as a sunset on an undisturbed pristine lake.
The center of our attention on the instrumental side of this song is the acoustic guitar. Patiently it discharges one ultralight melody after another, piling them on top of each other until we’re overwhelmed by their simplistic glow. The notes wrap around the lyrics in an opulent embrace that is reminiscent of self-discovery and the feeling one gets when developing a meaningful connection with God. As much as the vocals are here to translate the emotion in Rainwood’s heart, the guitar is doing just as much to give these emotions some context and fill us with the same feeling that Rainwood is experiencing before our very ears. The synchronization between the two is breathtaking to put it mildly.
“I’ll Never Be Alone Again” is a very plaintive, unperforated single that doesn’t go out of its way to dazzle us with virtuosity. When we strip away the sleek varnish of the EQ, this is really just Rainwood and a couple of backing players laying down a poignant acoustic ballad that not only works inside of a black and white production but thrives in such a format. Rainwood has the sort of pipes and style of attack that don’t require elementary frills nor silly bells and whistles to shake us and leave a strong impression, and I would go as far as to say that his work is best consumed without any of the filtration that is normally required by his less-talented peers.
Whether you’re a regular at Sunday service or not is irrelevant; “I’ll Never Be Alone Again” is a powerful feel-good anthem from a songwriter who has proven to be brilliantly calculated in his arrangements and dexterous in his command of indescribable emotions. Of his three albums released to date, Unknown Author might be his most intriguing, and this single encapsulates the energy of the LP excellently. Rather than trying to sell us on his interpretation of scripture or his own way of living life, he’s simply sharing with us where he stands with Jesus when the day is done. In the process he leaves even the biggest curmudgeons feeling a little more optimistic about the days ahead, which is something that artists both in and outside of the Gospel music lexicon often spend a lifetime striving to achieve.
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