English-Canadian singer-songwriter has released a band new single ‘Soldier’.
The song comes on the heels of Roff’s tender and brilliant take on Jeff Buckley’s ‘Lover, You Should’ve Come Over’.
When we talked to Roff last month, I attempted to get him to reveal the details of his upcoming material, but couldn’t get him to spill the beans. I blame myself. “Right now, there’s definitely a lot of other new material,” Roff explained in the interview. “That’s sort of culminating in the background that will be coming out. I’m not exactly sure when I can’t tell you when, but it will be coming out soon. Like there’s probably two or three songs… Yeah, two or three songs this summer, and then some more after that.”
Well, here we are, getting one of those songs. ‘Soldier’ is five minutes of tender vocal layerings from the man who is quickly establishing his expertise at building entire soundscapes with his voice alone. As the folky arrangement becomes more fully fleshed out, lyrics like: “Sensible and stubborn/Strong within the mind” take on added poetic resonance.
Roff isn’t interested in beating you over the head with a turgid message song: he’d rather express his own feelings and experiences in an esoteric, calming, and universal kind fashion, propelled by brilliant melodic lines and gentle instrumental backing. The message is there for you to find, but it remains inviting even at its most explicit.
“‘Soldier’ touches on my experience growing up LGBT+ in a still toxic masculine world,” Roff explains in a press release. “Suppressing it, undergoing mental health struggles and then coming out the other end stronger than ever before. It’s a song dedicated to anyone who has ever felt different or struggled with personal identity. You are not alone and much stronger than you’ll ever imagine.”
As Pride month comes to an end, it’s important that the increased focus of the struggle of the LGBTQ+ community continues to be highlighted and talked about, even as corporations begin to fall by the wayside now that the official month of celebration is over. We here at Far Out will keep providing a platform for queer artists, but we’re not doing it to put them on a pedestal and gawk at their identities or to take advantage of modern trends. We feature artists when they make great songs, and ‘Soldier’ is a great song.
Check out the audio for ‘Soldier’ down below.