Kiss from a Rose

Live in Paris by Seal

1994, 1 track, 4 mins 48 sec

      Kiss from a Rose
      Official 1
      Kiss from a Rose (Live from the SiriusXM Studios 2017)
      Live 1
      Kiss from a Rose (Live from BBC Radio 2 2015)
      Live 2
      Kiss from a Rose
      Static Image 1
      Kiss from a Rose (Remixed by Kicks From A Rhodes)
      Remix 1
      Kiss from a Rose (Remixed by Dubvirus)
      Remix 2
      Kiss from a Rose (Featuring Pitch Battle)
      Featuring 1
      Kiss from a Rose (Covered by Luke Friend)
      User Cover 1
      Kiss from a Rose (Covered by Matt & Alex)
      User Cover 2
      Kiss from a Rose (Covered by Roses in Bloom)
      User Cover 3

Though it was released to much popularity in 1994 and even more popularity during the re-release in 1996, Seal actually wrote “Kiss from a Rose” way back in 1987, initially rejecting it. For reasons unknown, he was rather embarrassed with the demo, and effectively ‘canned’ it by throwing it into a corner of his studio. It was not until a re-tooling by Trevor Horn during the recording sessions for his album Seal II, where suddenly, the right balance was struck, and the song went on to immense success, garnering 1996 Grammy awards for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Male Pop Performance. Seal is that unique hybrid who seamlessly mixes R&B and Pop, which is why he has had the illustrious career that he has achieved. On ‘Kiss’, the ballad creates a multi-layered mystery, almost operatic in its form, free from rhythmic conformity, and instead concerned with flowery prose and raw emotion. Seal sets the tone very softly in the beginning, singing; “There used to be a graying tower alone on the sea, you became the light on the dark side of me, love remained a drug that's the high and not the pill.” Already, the lyrics are evocative, painting fantastic pictures in the mind, and playing with expected meanings. Love is only the good feeling, and not a prescription. Seal’s voice is extremely playful as finds a creative high note, singing “But did you know, that when it snows, my eyes become large, and the light that you shine can be seen.” The music is played in a baroque manner, with Seal playing as a modern bard. His words are so imaginative, as he brings actual poetry to a R&B genre that all too often states the obvious rather than the subtext; “Baby, I compare you to a kiss from a rose on the gray, ooh, the more I get of you, the stranger it feels, yeah, now that your rose is in bloom, a light hits the gloom, on the gray.” Fascinating are these words, that can almost seem like their own special language. All told, Seal describes a woman who has a profound effect on his gloom, yet, he also factors in that he must adjust the aperture of his dark lens in order to see more of her healing light – thus, it is a mutual act, rather than one in which, simply, a woman’s beauty saves the depressive from himself.

taylor
Written by @taylor

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