Friday, January 21st, 2022

Yola – Dancing Away in Tears

It’s our favourite country-soul-funk-pop-disco-rock artist of them all, or so our sidebar will say.


Al Varela: One of the many shining diamonds on Stand For Myself. It’s incredible to hear a song that strikes the perfect balance of sadness and happiness all at once, but the careful tempo, soft keys, and horns that never overstep their boundaries get there. There’s something magical about hearing the production all come together over Yola’s mesmerizing voice, spinning into a blur of jazz and blues that truly feels like you’re dancing your sadness away. It doesn’t get too showy, but it never runs out of that hidden euphoria underneath. Pure delight.

Ian Mathers: The kind of song that makes being sad feel somehow luxurious, that makes wallowing in it seem like an appealing way to spend and evening and not just a drain. If only all our heartbreak could be so lushly appointed.

Wayne Weizhen Zhang: Blue break-up made blissful through soft disco. 

Edward Okulicz: The sound of this is just unbeatable, a touch of 70s soul-pop, a sprinkle of disco dust, and definitely some late 70s/early 80s soft rock lighting. I’m talking “Kiss You All Over” if it was a break-up song; that slick, that sumptuous. Maybe the verses are a little underwritten, like they needed more weight and more words, but the chorus carries the weight, because it’s perfect. Yola’s tears melt into a huge sigh by the song’s end and inappropriately I’m left with nothing but a huge smile on my face.

Juana Giaimo: This has a pleasing melody with the most beautiful orchestration and a warm retro beat. I can’t complain but everything flows so peacefully that I’m also finding it hard to find the emotion of the lyrics in the music. 

Will Adams: Heartbreak never sounded so luxurious.

Dorian Sinclair: Yola’s greatest strength — and she has many, many strengths — is her knack (with writing partners Dan Auerbach and, in this instance, Natalie Hemby) for creating songs that feel absolutely timeless. There are a lot of things I can praise about “Dancing Away in Tears”; the way Yola floats the high notes on the chorus, the heartbreak she carries throughout, the way the horns and synth play off each other to shape the entire song. But what it comes down to is a songwriter at the absolute top of her game, putting together something that is unquestionably hers but still feels like you’ve always known it. It’s a trick she is so consistently capable of that it should no longer surprise me, but somehow, in the best way, it always does.

Reader average: [10] (3 votes)

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