When repurposing the past for the future, it can be difficult to avoid being kitsch or tacky; too much nostalgia and the song doesn't feel fresh, not enough nostalgia and the mark has been missed completely. While we see sonic iconography from yesteryear injected into a wide variety of modern music, it's really something special when an artist performs that dangerous balancing act with assertion, flair and ease. That's exactly what GRYFF has done with his new, funk-flooded jam, 'Something 2 Hold'.
From the opening notes, Gryff vividly sets the scene. Cruising down Ocean Drive in a Ferrari Daytona - top down, of course - and dusk has coated the sky in a gorgeous kaleidoscope of pink, gold and blue. The breeze is flicking through your hair and fluttering through your unbuttoned shirt. With a look to your left, you raise your Aviator sunglasses to see the fading sunlight shimmer across the Atlantic.
What Gryff has achieved on 'Something 2 Hold', the new single from upcoming album Calypso Drip, is an immersing of the listener to a time and a place they've never been, but still making it feel all too real. The clever sample of Hall & Oates' classic 'Out of Touch' further pounds that sense of nostalgia into your ears, but Gryff draws the line there. His rich vocal delivery breathes a contemporary feel into the incredibly 80's-inspired melody, before erupting into that raucous solo that heralds the climactic final run of the chorus.
Plug into the latest music with our FREE weekly newsletter
"When I'm scared I get closer to you," Gryff sings with a level of vulnerability that contrasts with the retro utopia beautifully. It's a song of unrequited love that serves as a sobering reminder that the sun still sets in paradise. However, for Gryff, the sun is only just starting to shine on what's certain to be a huge, iridescent career.
Words by JACKSON LANGFORD