Herein resides the sound of falling apart—a surprisingly powerful catalyst for healing. Jarrod Milton's "Sage," premiered today, sees him discard pretense as he sorts through the rubble of a relationship on the verge of crumbling. The newly released single reflects a destructive dance—spiraling downward—that mutual instability so often fuels.
Brisk but beautiful, each lyric arose from the Atlanta artist's reality. Perhaps that's why each line, somber as it may seem, feels factual. "This was actually a real moment, like every lyric came from a conversation between me and someone else," Jarrod says of the song. "So I just took that and ran with it."
"Sage" is not only powerful because of what it contains: The track came to be under less than stellar circumstance. Enduring a prolonged hospital stay, Milton used music to pass time in an undistinguished bed with monotonous sheets, turning dire surroundings into musical inspiration. Writing energized his spirits. This record was the first of many to emerge. Close collaborator and production wizard Oliver Blue stood by Jarrod's side to help score his unwell friend's moving words. Their collaborative process is one defined by deep trust.
"Once I had the hook melody, I immediately called Ivano [Oliver] and told him I had something," Milton remembers. "He came to visit me that next week or so and we started laying out ideas. The songs we make usually start out that way: I'll write out an idea, take it to Ivano, sing him the melody and structure and then we'll start hashing it out to take it from a thought to a song. I'll leave to get some water and by the time I'm back, he'll have taken to the track to a whole 'nother planet. I give him the surface and then he pushes it to its core elements."
Those core elements are striking. Solitary guitar chords drill deep into your chest, paced slowly and spaced with distance to maximize each strum's impact. Vocal samples float across higher frequencies, angelic and operatic. The instrumentation is at once light, delicate, foggy, and bright. Glitches softly interrupt the progression, a reminder of a story in flux, and a telltale sign of Blue's involvement ("I’m in love with broken sounds," he tells us). Everything is set in motion. The inevitability of change—for better or worse—shines through here, ultimately making "Sage" a wise song indeed, not just a morose one. The collective effort is piercing enough to quiet a room.
Listen to "Sage" below and let it sink in. We encourage you to dive deeper into Jarrod's story and check out his Daily Discovery interview right here.