For a long time, the city of Minneapolis was associated in many people’s minds with iconic acts such as Bob Dylan, Soul Asylum, and Prince and just as iconic music venues which helped drive many of its creative offspring on to greater things. Sadly, following the death of George Floyd on those same streets, many people now associate the city with forces altogether darker and destructive.
So it is only natural that an artist such as Brian Charles Tischleder, who spent his formative years on those streets, felt the need to comment on this dark event. I Can’t Breathe is both soulful and seductive musically, harmony vocals and wandering saxophones adding wonderful accessibility to the power and poignancy of the piece. But more than anything, the song is important in ways that most music can never aspire to.
And what you end up with is a song that draws you in, a song constructed of emotion turned into sonic outbursts, a song that cuts right to the heart of this murderous scenario, one built largely around lyrics echoing Floyd’s final words.
Melancholic, masterful, and a must-listen-to-track for anyone who prefers their music to have intent and purpose.