Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.
In this morning’s edition of the Independent Spotlight, we return our gaze to Anzi, a rising indie pop artist signed to Chrome City Records. Last August, we explored her soulful pop debut, ‘On My Own.’ Now the Washington DC-based performer has released her sophomore endeavor, a single entitled ‘Run Away.’ Is it a tune worth spinning, and does it propel Anzi forward into new artistic territory? Let’s find out!
Right out of the gate, ‘Run Away’ is much more electronic-tinged than its predecessor. The soulful R&B nature of ‘On My Own’ has been traded out for a much more punchy, infectious, even danceable sound. It’s laden in bright, jingly synthesizers and copious reverb as Anzi sings about eloping with a significant other. Thematically, it’s certainly a departure from ‘On My Own.’
The production of ‘Run Away’ is quite good, highlighting Anzi as a strong vocalist who has a knack for penning good pop hooks, something that truly is quite difficult and underrated. It’s clear that she’s aiming for an 80s-esque sound, and in that vein, Anzi is very successful. Lyrically, however, the song is inundated with endless tropes about innocent love and running away with a perfect significant other. The song covers no territory that hasn’t been thoroughly explored for over forty years by every pop artist under the sun.
My main criticism of Anzi’s ‘On My Own’ was that it showed hints of a potentially poignant and soulful performer with a lovely voice. That observation still stands, perhaps even more starkly, with the release of ‘Run Away.’ I’d still argue that Anzi’s potential would likely be put to better use with stronger lyricism and more compelling subject matter.
Similar to ‘On My Own,’ however, ‘Run Away’ is still a perfectly acceptable pop song. It’ll be a nice inclusion to a spring break playlist. If that’s the target Anzi aimed to hit, she’s done so. The song is worth a listen if you enjoy carefree pop music. I still hope for more depth and artistic exploration in Anzi’s future, though, because this new single doesn’t do her full justice in that department.