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Piece Of Your Heart

by Meduza
feat. Goodboys

There’s some seriously meta record-production going on here at 0:39, when it sounds like the singer breaks out of character to discuss what kind of line to sing. What’s so great about it as a stunt is that I’m sure many people hearing it for the first time on the radio will assume, from the informality of the spoken interjection, that the DJ has started talking over the track, at least until the voice returns to singing the riff a few moments later. And that kind of “did I really just hear that?!” moment is gold dust as far as grabbing the listener’s attention is concerned. For this reason, I’m surprised we so seldom hear this sort of off-the-cuff speech — the last big example that comes to mind is that phone call in the middle of Taylor Swift’s 'We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together', and that was back in 2012! Perhaps it’s because there are so many rappers around these days that singers are forgetting about the simple shock value of switching into normal speech. And, come to think of it, when was the last time you heard a rapper momentarily break into song, but just for a few words, rather than as a repeating chorus hook? I could easily see that producing a similarly head-turning effect in the right hands.

Less impressive, to my ears, is the lyric intelligibility. Yes, I know there’s a line ‘keep it subliminal’ — but, frankly, if that’s the reason why the words are so difficult to decipher here, then I think it’s a pretty limp excuse. Once again, it’s down to that unholy trinity of poor performance diction, weak vocal mid-range tone, and insufficient automation to retrieve various smaller swallowed syllables. What are the two things the singer’s asking to show in the first lines of verse one? I think the second one’s heartache, but the first is still a mystery after repeated listening. And if he can put an ‘H’ on “heartache”, why not also on the title line’s “heart”? Or maybe I’ve got the wrong end of the stick, and he’s actually a visual connoisseur requesting a private viewing of someone’s latest canvas…