“Love One Another” by Alias Wayne
Opulent guitar strings and enrapturing vocals run together in a brooding twist of melodicism as powerful as it is communicative in the new single “Love One Another” by Alias Wayne, privately known as Ranzel X Kendrick, and while it’s true that most pop singles aren’t quite as good as they’re advertised to be, I think this might just be a rare exception to the rule. Instead of approaching this composition with a reverent tone, there’s a bit of rebelliousness in Alias Wayne’s style of execution that immediately tells us we’re in for something both special and one of a kind. Rusticity is the order of the day on the instrumental half of the track, whereas the lyrical framework is rather reminiscent of a plaintive folk-rock I don’t hear nearly as much of anymore.
This is a very tight mix, with the instruments piled on top of each other but still presented with enough clarity for us to discern where one elegant strand of fretwork ends and another is just beginning. Our singer competes for the lion’s share of the spotlight, but it’s the audience stepping away victorious at the end of this solid show of strength.
Harmonies tend to dominate our focus throughout the whole of “Love One Another,” but this isn’t because Alias Wayne fails to give the lyrics a life of their own. Instead, I think that his melodic depth is what presses them forward toward the audience more than anything else could have; it’s one thing to supercharge a rhythm or even add some weight to this arrangement with more instrumentation, but to shape something with the very tone of voice you’re employing takes raw unfiltered talent.
The duality we get out of the vocal exchange in this mix is incredible, and I think it contributes some vitality to the verses as well. The tempo feels set more by the crooning than it does the percussion, but the drum element isn’t rendered pointless by the commanding nature of Alias Wayne’s delivery at all. Quite honestly, there isn’t a speck of filler coming between the artist and audience in this performance, which unfortunately makes this single a rather exceptional find this February.
I had never listened to Ranzel X Kendrick in any capacity before checking out this track, but from what I can tell he’s an artist who isn’t afraid to use his personality to convey a message, even through the lens of a complicated song. His compelling use of the studio as a tool with which he can craft a full-bodied, melodic experience for the listener is worthy of applause on its own, but it’s how he puts the harmonies in “Love One Another” into practice that strikes me as brilliant here. This makes me want to hear additional content and original material that we can gauge his abilities against, and my gut tells me that in either case critics like myself would not be disappointed with what we hear.
Alias Wayne has an edge over a lot of other singer/songwriters trying to accomplish the same thing he is with this single, and time should benefit his skills as he develops this unique sound even more.