Review: OneRepublic – “Wild Life”; A Thoughtfully Melodic Success

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'Wild Life' is mellower than OneRepublic's more well-known pieces, but it doesn't take away from the power and meaning behind what they want to depict.

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OneRepublic‘s new album Human has definitely been a long time coming; with its original release date of Summer 2020 pushed back due to the ongoing pandemic and the band’s own experiences isolating due to coming into contact with the virus. A single had not been released since May, but now, the project is finally on the horizon, and with the group in better health, we are finally privy to what they’ve been up to.

The single itself is was written for the Disney+ original movie Clouds (2020), which from its trailer hints at a film along the lines of The Fault in Our Stars (2014). ‘Wild Life’ is slow and thoughtful, with a hint of regret and a desire to move forward, whatever the circumstances. While not entirely what people expect from OneRepublic, who are known for more upbeat pieces like ‘Counting Stars’, it still managed to work, and for the genre of the film that Clouds‘ trailer implies, it fits perfectly.

The song speaks about the unimaginable “wild” nature to life, how it moves and changes without warning. “All these turns fill me […] with dread” as the lyrics go; the changes are going to frighten you – especially if they are something rather negative – but ‘Wild Life’ calls for you to make the most of it. “Live this wild life today”. Even if you don’t know what happens next you can still take charge, and make something from your experiences. Say what you want to say, do what you want to do.

Ultimately, the single is something both emotive and raw. There’s a sense of regret brought to the foreground with the beat. It’s slow, and it’s almost 35 seconds before the slow trawl brings in the first verse. For a single that is over four minutes long, ‘Wild Life’ is not something which feels as long as its run time suggests. In a meta link with other media, it plays with the idea that life may not always be as you expected, nor as long; a sentiment expressed by both its lyrics and the film for which it was written.

Even if OneRepublic did gain their notoriety from more upbeat and faster pieces, their ballads still display the same strength and impact behind their choice of words. This is evident through ‘Wild Life’.

‘Wild Life’ is available to listen to now via Mosely Music Group. Check out the lyric video below:

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Second-year archaeology & history student and Culture Editor 2019/20. Loves archery and Assassin's Creed, and still hoping to one day find the doorway to Narnia.

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