REVIEW: Jason Shand — The Petty Narcissist (Arctic Ocean) (SINGLE)
The Petty Narcissist (Arctic Ocean) opens with such slick chords I had to look over my shoulder to make sure a camera crew wasn’t following me. There is something inherently cinematic about the title track from Jason Shand’s second full length album, The Petty Narcissist (Arctic Ocean) which is set to be released on January 21, 2022. Shand knows how to draw you in with the right amount of flair and drama pop songs require to keep you coming back for more. The Petty Narcissist (Arctic Ocean) feels like it belongs in a film, scoring a character similar to James Bond.
The structure of The Petty Narcissist (Arctic Ocean) echoes that of an Epic poem. Shand takes us on a personal quest, navigating the painful emotions of a relationship that is past its expiration date. The track starts of slow and brooding like its hurtling towards something dark and inevitable. Shand provides a stylish and provocative melody before ascending to a feathery bridge that alleviates the weight of the lyrics. Then he plunges us back into the moody chorus. Shand won’t let you run away from the emotion. Instead, he has found a successful way to sing about heartache and pain without making you feel like you have to emotionally prepare yourself before every listen.
The Petty Narcissist (Arctic Ocean) takes on a life of its own. With each listen I can’t shake the feeling of going on a soul searching journey with Shand guiding me. Whether it was Shand’s intent to tell a story or not, it makes the listener have to know what happens next. It also allows for the evocative nature of the song to stand out rather than be lost in a flurry of chords and melodies. The production of this track has been thought through and deeply felt. Shand’s honesty separates this song from other tales of heartbreak. He doesn’t shy away from the realities of how messy interpersonal relationships can get, he embraces it.
The Petty Narcissist’s (Arctic Ocean) catchy chorus reminds me of one of Shand’s musical influences, Annie Lennox. Moodier then the booming keyboard and drums of Eurthymics’s Sweet Dreams, Shand’s voice enters just as powerfully as Lennox’s. For me, it’s Shand’s voice that stands out, carrying this track from start to finish. The melody only compliments Shand’s range as a singer and his, at times, coy but deeply personal lyrics. All of these elements come together, transforming the song into an artistic experience.
Shand wrote, produced, and composed all the music for his upcoming album. Shand’s lyrics are honest and human, while maintaining a level of poetic flair that keep this song wonderfully artistic and universal. If the rest of the album is anything like this, Shand will takes us on a soulful tale of the human condition. Providing listeners with that intoxicating, larger than life feeling you normally get when you’re in a movie theater. Breathless. Don’t miss The Petty Narcissist (Arctic Ocean), you will regret not going on the journey with Shand!