Amongst the firm guitars that come alive in the intro to Hoffman’s new single “Reflection,” a rich vocal track from Hoffman himself penetrates the opulent wall of sound with a cutting lyricism that is imagistic and begging for us to embrace its dreamlike poetry. The guitars are there to comfort him – if anything, they’re the only bit of major key harmony for both him and us to cling to in the churning confluence of melody and mood that is hypnotically pulling us asunder and into the weighty master mix. “Reflection” isn’t saturated in reverb, but its lustrous grooves tend to echo in all who consume them after only a single listen.
Hoffman has described this new track as a song he wants his fans to relate to on a personal level, though it was designed to highlight this skillset on the guitar (and it certainly does). That said, we never get the vibe that these lyrics were meant to be throwaway verses only included to help showcase the limber fretwork that supports them. Theirs is a story of regret and acceptance, and to some extent, they offer something that the strings are already telling us through their own mash-up of textures, which are then in turn distributed evenly across the whole of the single. Hoffman doesn’t sound like a prodigy here or even an experimentalist; actually, he sounds more in control of his artistry than ever before.
Wickedly ripping us to the left and right from the very instant that they first enter the fold, the percussive elements in “Reflection” ply us with conceited urgency only to break apart after the second chorus, ushering in the song’s final act and gripping us with their suffocating tonality. There’s nothing simple about “Reflection,” and yet it’s devoid of the overstated beats and reckless rhythm that has begun to plague the aforementioned genre with inauthentic material from the top of the spectrum down.
Those who can’t get enough of a sweet harmony reimagined in brilliant high-definition sound with a touch of shy but provocative lyrics need to hear what Hoffman is doing in this latest single. There’s no other way to put it; even though most everyone keen on indie music is aware of what this young man can do in the recording studio, Hoffman isn’t anywhere close to embracing the complacency of success. He’s determined to break into the international pop scene on his terms, and it’s hard to imagine a track as smooth and effective as this one not accomplishing that exact goal.