It’s been a handful of years since a friend introduced me to Emilie Autumn’s music and I first heard her album Enchant, but all this time later, I still find myself blown away by the power within her song “Ever.” The soft, piano-driven piece is calm on its surface, but beneath the flowing strings and soothing vocals is a lyrical intensity and passion that is impossible to resist, telling the haunting tale of someone who has a distressing amount of reliance on someone who was unresponsive.
Given the fairy tale influences throughout Enchant, one could speculate that the story within “Ever” is akin to a fairy tale without a happy ending, wherein the narrator falls in love with the noble prince, but no eleventh-hour turnabout brings the unlikely couple together; the prince remains “Ever in [their] sight / Ever out of touch.” However, the song remains grounded such that it can relate to the tragedy of such a situation in reality.
Musically as well as lyrically, “Ever” vacillates between two moods. The first is a fast-paced passion, a desperation, and the second a soft sincerity, slower and full of unfiltered affection. The erratic tempo makes it almost disorienting to listen to at first, but in the long run so powerfully complements the tone of the song; it helps to convey the fragility of the narrator between moments of unfortunate truths, such as, ”You were the one thing I could count on / Even if your apathy was what I expected,” and desperate longing, as in the song’s poignant confession, ”I’d leave a room of angels / Just to be alone / If only to say your name.”
Truthfully, despite its light tone, “Ever” is a harsh reality consisting of lyric after lyric that knocks the listener flat; one moment, it touches your heart with the most loving of confessions, and the next it shatters it with broken desperation. It isn’t a happy tale, nor would I wish for anyone to know something of its kind firsthand, but “Ever” is six minutes of flowing poetry with perfectly complementary instrumentals, and a listening experience that I highly recommend.