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A Review of Taya Minchington's Single "Whole"

By Mya Lyman

During high school, I had a bass guitar teacher who would become dead-eyed-pensive at the mention of self-recording programs. They would throw him into a monologue of the issues with the record companies in the 1970s followed by some (at least partially) fictitious tour story. For a musician who toured South America in the 1970s and is a self-proclaimed master of jazz piano, his envy for this generation of DIY musicians is tangible.

Nowadays, we can create entire albums from our bedroom floors. Indie, mostly encapsulating the sound and vibe of music rather than its independent nature, has become to young adults of the 2010s what rock n’ roll was to the young adults of the 1960s. From Billie Eilish and her brother’s home studio to the mainstream figurehead of bedroom pop, Clairo, the bout of new musicians hopping on their laptop to create not only new music but new genres is exciting for any music connoisseur. 

Taya Minchington’s single “Whole” is a zeitgeist of the indie genre and the generation of DIY musicians and makes sameface’s “anyone musicians” to listen to. The lull of her starting ticks of the acoustic guitar starting the track off should not mislead the listener, the track delves into echoes which armor up for the quicker, even groovier, chorus--passing the energy along seamlessly. The fiercely independent acoustic guitar track tempts dancing to a song that’s otherwise brooding and pensive, with themes delving into depression and fumbling for coping mechanisms that don’t want to be found.

After the second verse, the song hits a stride with the tune’s haunting motif: make me your queen I just wanna feel whole. Minchington’s lyrics tap into the bleakness of youth that is often cover-up. When there seems to be no solution we solely look externally for the last pieces to complete us. The downfall of any semi-playable rom-com is that dependency, but it’s always been and always be a reality of romance and, often, platonic encounters--so why not sing about it? The rest of the song’s lyrics connect us to the inner workings of a young mind torn. Impressively, Minchington not only is playing all the song’s instruments (another benefit of bedroom floor music studios) but employs her voice on a professional and attractive level of musicianship. 

What I enjoy most about the track is its “in-between” nature. So much of the indie genre is either Men I Trust’s laid back, “gotta finish this script before noon but it’s only 15 pages so no sweat” or Woods’ quick, paced, urgent, “I’m angry enough to brood but calm enough to drive” vibes, but “Whole” slips into the center. It has enough substantial change to catch the attention of the listener but still allows you to play it in the background if needed. 

Listen to "Whole" here.

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