So, is it KINDER as in ‘more loving,’ or KINDER as in the German word for ‘child’? Both definitions seem to be at play in London-based singer-songwriter Leo Wyatt’s latest single, which finds low-fi textures colliding headlong with orchestral lushness.
Call Out’s verses are anchored by looping guitar arpeggios and the steady thump of a bass drum. Strange and unrecognisable textures bubble up from deep in the mix, hideously squashed and stretched like deep-sea creatures brought back to the surface. ‘Waiting for you to come back, when you do I’ll call out to you,’ KINDER moans as a single fragile synth note sounds in the distance. The overall effect is not exactly ugly, but there is a real sense of warts-and-all honesty to the performance. The guitar strings rattle against the frets and the production brings KINDER’s dejected vocals into stark focus. His phrasing is strikingly childlike in places – even the opening line, which finds KINDER ‘sitting on the staircase on my own,’ seems to evoke boyish solitude.
It’s this boyishness that gives the song’s climax its emotional weight. Call Out’s final moments achieve a bliss point not usually seen outside Post-Rock, with layers of guitars and falsetto that call back to the glory days of Sigur Ros. The music seems to bloom and swell, tenderly lifting KINDER out of his sadness before carrying him to the song’s conclusion in a burst of joyful noise. The shimmering textures may be very definition of indulgent, but the moment feels earned. Despite the sparse loneliness of the verses, Call Out shows some kindness to Wyatt in the end. The song has no interest in lingering fade-outs nor gratuitious arena-rock repetition – just a well-timed moment of catharsis, and then it’s off into the night. It’s worth the wait.