“Better Things” is a sharp kiss-off to a self-centred lover - think 2017’s answer to Shania Twain’s “That Don’t Impress Me Much”. It’s a light-hearted way to address a very real problem, and a stunning introduction to the Brooklyn-based artist’s richly textured electro-pop. Drawing inspiration from artists from the pop sphere and beyond - she cites Kid Cudi as a major influence - “Better Things” sees DYLN carving a comfortable niche for herself in preparation for future releases.
“If you think that the whole world revolves around you / I got better things to do,” DYLN asserts, over the track’s slick electronic production. It’s these words that provide the song’s major hook; one you’ll be struggling to get out of your head for hours after listening.
Where “Better Things” sparkled with sass through its choppy vocal samples and rolling R&B percussion, “Hold” shows DYLN’s emotional side with a more restrained approach. Emotive keys and softly swirling electronics provide a shifting, subtle backdrop to DYLN’s powerful vocal, before giving way to purposeful guitars. The chorus delivers the inevitable, punchy pop drop, but it’s just short enough not to feel like a clichéd overuse of 2017’s favourite songwriting device.
“‘Hold’ is about needing to walk away from torment when the heart gets weary of fighting its battles,” DYLN explains. “I wrote this song during a painful period of my life. A time where I was in constant anguish, needing to piece myself together.”
“The things we love the most are also the things that hurt us the most. ‘Find what you love and let it kill you’ is a quote I always found to be mysteriously poetic. There's beauty in destruction and honour in loving what tears us apart. ‘Hold’ is my expression of this.”