Dodie’s Human Collection Gently Leads Listeners Through the Humanities of Love

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Using soft vocals and warm harmonies, English singer-songwriter Dodie Clark (more commonly known as Dodie) takes listeners through a tour of the highs and lows of love with her newest EP, Human. Exploring the various nuances and vulnerabilities of affection in a very poetic and raw manner, Dodie channels all past heartbreaks and new puppy loves into a shining final product with Human.

Released in 2019, Human is Dodie’s third EP. The seven-track collection was self-released by Dodie, along with producers Joe Rubel, Hugh Worskett, Fred Cox, and David Kosten.

Human gives off a very tender and delicate indie pop vibe, similar to Dodie’s other two EP’s, Intertwined and You. You can hear the resemblance during Human’s first song, “Arms Unfolding.” “Arms Unfolding” is sung completely acapella with only Dodie’s vocals, featuring pure, clear harmonies and a continuous chord being hummed in the background. The mellow impression given in this song carries through most of the EP, with another example being “Human.”

“Human” has a slightly more upbeat and light sound while still maintaining the calming vibe of the EP. Featuring fellow singer-songwriter Tom Walker,  this song delves into the initial feeling of wanting to get to know everything about someone. However, when you listen more closely, the song takes on a double meaning, implying that love can grow stale over time and become forced and fake. This is expressed in the music video for “Human,” and found subtly in the melody, with Tom Walker’s voice never actually harmonizing with Dodie’s, but only mirroring it. All of these small details  are great examples of Dodie’s incredible musicianship and creativity as a songwriter.

The message of Human involves not only the process of loving another, but the process of loving oneself as well. In “If I’m Being Honest,” Dodie writes lyrics that grapple with the feeling of disgust in oneself, and writes of her hope that her past self could love her despite her flaws. Even though the message is quite heavy, the music itself balances out the sadness of the lyrics. “If I’m Being Honest” has a very serene, retro, and almost jazzy sound, making it a very smooth and mellow song to listen to.

The one song that doesn’t quite blend as well with the others is “Monster.” Even though the lyrics are well written and fit with the theme of Human, the music sticks out like a sore thumb. It has a very metallic, robotic, and almost glitchy sound, which throws off the listener. “Monster” is a good song, but it simply doesn’t fit in with Human’s aesthetic.

Overall, I believe that Human is one of Dodie’s most promising EP’s. Its soothing and gentle ambience makes it the perfect album to listen to while cuddled in a blanket on a rainy day sipping a cup of tea. I rate Human four out of five stars, and would recommend this EP to anyone that likes indie pop, very relatable love songs, or simply likes to be serenaded by tranquil English voices. With a voice and talent like Dodie’s, it is hard not to love Human.

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