Have you been used by someone? Do you know what it’s like to come to the crushing realization that the person you love, doesn’t love you back? That you’re nothing more than a ‘payday’; the material means to another’s selfish end? Alex O’aiza knows all about it. And in his latest acoustic offering ‘Money’ – he’s taking us all to the bank.
‘Money’ by Alex O’aiza is the kind of song that will stop you dead in your tracks. It’s a brilliant cacophony of converging musical genres; the kind of song that holds no memory and has no name. ‘Money’ encompasses and becomes the listener; imparting and attaching itself to the very core of your musical being. Very few artists are both the Summer and the Winter but if there ever was one, then Alex O’aiza is surely he. The harmony work on the guitar is nothing short of alluring, but of all the incredible elements prevalent, it’s the poetic power of the lyrics that leave a most lasting impression.
Alex’s voice is unique: like a quiet whisper wrapped inside a scream. It’s emotional, evocative, and above all else powerful. His metaphors are staggering: when he sings “cause even crystal balls and diamond rings have more than one face” I literally get chills. That’s wordplay at its finest; that’s Weezy F. Baby caliber. And in the case of Alex O’aiza – the ‘F’ is for “fo-nomenal.” He’s exactly the kind of intelligent and thoughtful young artist we need; one who can encourage us to think as much as anything else through the waves and emotions of his music.
The video itself serves as a commentary on the overarching theme of ‘Money’. Which is: everything is black and white. There are no grey areas and no room for misinterpretations. What you see is quite simply what you get, and in this case, what’s on the surface is a portrayal of a relationship that was poisoned right from the start. Dollars and sense; nothing more and nothing less. We feel the pain of a man attempting to come to terms with who he is as a person and the love he feels for another. Contrast that against the understanding and acceptance that those feelings are not and will never be reciprocated.
Can true love ever be bought? Is it possible to love someone so indiscriminately, that you would do anything, sacrifice everything, in an attempt to make them feel the same way? I don’t have the answer to that. Alas, I have no money to even begin contemplating such a thing. But when it comes down to it, I think ‘Money’ isn’t even necessarily a representation of fiat or finances. But rather when Alex sings “you just want to take my money”, what he’s really trying to convey is an emotional expenditure. Someone who uses another person for all their worth, until they’re nothing more than a broken fragment; a shadow of what they once were. That’s what I take away from it at least. But regardless of the meaning behind the metaphor, what’s beyond debate is that Alex O’aiza is something special. In fact, I haven’t encountered songwriting of this caliber since the early days of Mark Kozelek and Sun Kil Moon. If that in and of itself isn’t a glowing endorsement beyond all others, then I don’t know what is.
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