The Wind Blows

Michael Menachem

The All-American Rejects have the ability to release a thrashing rock song and turn around after their most successful hit with a momentous ballad. The Oklahoma band continues with the musical antithesis of their hit rock anthem "Gives You Hell," with "The Wind Blows." Singer Tyson Ritter has said the ballad is about a love story that just ends, but on a good note, with verses that are as enthralling as the choruses.

Morse code-like rhythmic pulses and an ambient midtempo pace carry the song, while its emotional grandeur pierces and howls with fragile falsetto moments and a progressive, somewhat dissonant guitar. Eric Valentine, who produced hits for Good Charlotte, Smash Mouth and Third Eye Blind, builds an elaborate framework for "The Wind Blows," showcasing the vocals, melody and instrumentation so that they retain AAR's rock signature but broaden the sound to capture mainstream attention.

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