Pray for me? asks John Floreani‘s new single “Before The Devil Knows I’m Dead”. And before I can blink, I’m swept up in the latest story from John’s upcoming album sin. As with the singles before it (“Echoes” and “Oh Brother”), the brand new single paints a picture of a moment of contemplation. And it’s another piece of music that’s emotionally moving, due to the magnitude of what is being shared.
Deceptively simple, the echoey rhythmic plucks and the repeated female vocal sample of the song’s introduction set a scene for a big concern: “How can I be sure I’ll get to heaven with the one that I love?”. Having made a meaningful promise of forever, and intending for forever to include the afterlife, the song is an acknowledgement of mistakes made that may have left a permanent mark and punishment.
“My hands are quiet. I’ve paid for what I did in the night.”
The arrival of piano and a soft and clear “I wanna make it to heaven before the devil knows I’m dead” lands home how sneaking into the metaphorical ‘good place’ without anyone noticing may be John’s/the protagonist’s only hope to be beside his love forever. Strings and apologetic admissions form a lump in this listener’s throat, where John shares that his lover may be on their own.. and are they okay with that?
There’s not really any words I can put to this to do more justice to the song than it can do on its own. Every line captures an earnest desire to be considered decent and pure enough – to be forgiven for sins, ultimately. The female vocals and light melody that join in as the song comes toward its end just add to the beautiful picture of connection and hope.
Have a listen via YouTube below, and pre-order sin now here.