I was on Spotify a few days ago and for some strange reason, I wanted to listen to Suddenly Strange by Bic Runga. I just wanted to return to it because I remembered how much I really loved that song.
I first discovered Bic Runga when I heard Sway on the radio and I found myself in the record store almost every other day asking if her album had arrived. I remember finally asking a friend to buy the CD abroad or something and when the album arrived, Sway had been playing over and over on the radio and I was just so enthralled by Suddenly Strange.
I love the build-up and the fragile way she sings the opening verses. Slowly, one-by-one, the other instruments start to come in, accenting the acoustic guitar that serves as the song’s melody, but as she hits the first chorus and the tambourines start kicking, it’s just glorious. When it finally crescendos with the drums and the strings, I’m totally taken over. The song becomes so much more grander and there is more confidence and conviction in the way she sings and I just love the emotional arc that both the music and the vocal performance makes in the span of this four minute song.
And then, in closer scrutiny, I discovered it’s a break-up song. I didn’t realise that until much, much later.
I just had to come back to this song, for some reason. Suddenly Strange indeed.