Music

Brave New Music: Mason Summit’s “Snowblind”

To write a song is to share internal, sometimes unfinished business in such a way that it conveys an emotional truth and allows the listener (who is, perhaps, hearing the story or ideas for the first time) not only to participate in the storytelling as a receiver, but also to endow the song with their own experiences. Twenty-four-year-old singer/songwriter Mason Summit, is becoming a master of the art of the shared private moment. Luckily for us, Summit accepted at an early age his calling to create music (and has put out some deeply rewarding music in his previous releases) and continues to flex his growing artistic muscles here. He is proving to be the Socratic musician of his generation, proving that music is perhaps the deftest manner in which to examine life, making it eminently “worth living.”

What strikes me is the precision with which Summit strikes just the right mood in his new single, “Snowblind.” He knows how to establish an atmosphere instantaneously. There is an economy built into “Snowblind” that freezes the listener into a very specific moment and—because the questions the song’s narrator asks are so discreet (yet so yearning)—the result is quite provocative. Is it possible to be a “voyeur” with the ears? I ask this because Summit’s work can be so personal that it strongly draws one in, compelling the listener to lean in for more. It almost catches one by surprise. But fear not, for you have been warned. Go forth and (thankfully) appreciate the rarity of such a talented artist—one who is still staking out unexplored territories and inviting you to accompany him on the passage.

“Snowblind” is something like a curling, lengthening, and then softly expanding while at the same time disappearing, ribbon of smoke from a contemplatively dragged cigarette. An after-effect of a much grander action, and yet entirely connected to it—convincing us that a musical parsing of the contradictions involved in living cannot be achieved any other way. A nonjudgemental realization addressing the reality of death in all of its random strategies. And, as in life for each and every one of us, the song is over when it feels it has just begun. It is all too brief. A brave choice to keep things so cool, so almost there, so hypnotically seductive… so full of wisdom, admitting that no song has all the answers.

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