Songs like this are scarce almost twenty years into the 21st century. Taylor Renee Marx’s “Overwhelming Love” is the sort of soaring orchestral pop that used to be far more common a quarter century ago. It isn’t an unheard of species of pop song nowadays but, in the wake of pop country and hip hop’s mainstream ascendency, songs like “Overwhelming Love” seem increasingly quaint or obsolete. Thankfully Marx and her collaborators never received the memo. This is a very personal effort for Marx, you can hear that in every line she sings, and the song’s subject matter paying tribute to God’s transformative presence in her life is another aspect of the track out of step with much of modern music. No matter though. Artistic talents such as this strike down their own path regardless of the moment’s fashion and, quite often, they produce work with enduring value. I think that will be the case with everything Taylor Renee Marx touches.

Her hair-raising vocal prowess isn’t as apparent in the opening lines as it later becomes but it is ear-catching nonetheless. You can’t help but appreciate and admire the clear patience she exercises unveiling the early lines of the track, allowing listeners to settle in, and how they contrast so well with her later full-throated vocal pyrotechnics. The emotion she invests into the phrasing rises and falls with the musical accompaniment and she has a measured way of tackling this facet of her performance distinguishing her from many of her would-be contemporaries. Instead of rushing things along or opting for the lowest common denominator, Marx, instead, shows a connection with the song few of her peers are capable of achieving with their own material and reaches far beyond the typical purview of a 21 year old singer.

The lyrics lack any groundbreaking or revolutionary qualities; there are no poetic or verbal gymnastics apparent in the writing. They are, instead, worded in a pointed manner that never wastes a single syllable and testify about her abiding faith and gratitude with on-point and never garish language. The words are a good fit for the musical arrangement – particularly the guitar and, as the track hits is pinnacle, give increased emotional weight to a performance already soaring with feeling.

There’s definitely a theatrical slant to how the music sets up. “Overwhelming Love”, in some respects, is a journey of the soul that takes listeners from low-key beginnings into the stratosphere before ending. There is a dynamic ebb and flow to the performance that never feels poorly paced or thought out. The guitar work brings quite a bit of crunch, perhaps surprisingly, during the song’s crescendos and the drumming plays an equally important role in determining the track’s dramatic tilt. The abundance of synthesizers included during the performance are never overwrought. Taylor Renee Marx’s “Overwhelming Love” will likewise overwhelm you with its musical firepower – there’s an ample amount of sonic color here for your ears to feast on and you’ll likely find yourself returning more than once to enjoy this track’s rewards.

Nicole Killian

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