Vulnerability in music, much like in real life, is a spiky area to navigate. From one side, it purposefully displays the person in question in their weakest and most easily exploited shapes. On the other, it is a display of humility, realness, and honesty. On Grey River & The Smoky Mountain’s latest offering, titled ‘Unlovable’, Singer and Lyricist Rena Papageorgiou display a striking amount of vulnerability.
Grey River & The Smoky Mountain is a Folk Pop/Americana outfit hailing all the way from Athens, Greece. With a range that goes from Folk to Americana all the way to Blues and everything in between, they are certainly a musical force to be reckoned with, and an experienced bunch with years of gigging and recording under their belt.
Their latest offering, ‘Unlovable’, sees them stripping their sound all the way down to the striking voice of Rena, along with a couple of very clearly recorded acoustic guitars, to a very warm and hospitable effect that creates a vibe that makes you feel right at home from the get-go. The words are very direct and confrontational, and even if you don’t relate to them, Rena’s heartfelt delivery, on both sound and video, is sure to make you feel something stir deep down.
The composition is minimalist, bordering on repetition. Now I understand, that such a song would potentially be harmed by an intricate, writhing composition. Yet, I cannot deny I ended up longing for a different instrument to strike a chord here or a melodic line there, just to break the monotony… Even if this monotony is perfectly intended and is perfectly fine.
This is a simple song, that conveys a deeply personal message, in an efficient and calculated manner, such that it can only be a product of a group of impressive experiences in when to show off, and exactly when to not do that. And for this, I commend Grey River & The Smoky Mountain for their effort and wholeheartedly tell them that they are, indeed, very lovable.