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Synth Single Review: "Terms of Endearment" by Manhatten & Star Madman

Karl is a longtime freelancer who's passionate about music, art, and writing.


Manhatten & Star Madman’s Terms of Endearment is a song about love and the ache to express it fully to the people we deeply care for and desire. It’s backed by music that breathes easily. A slightly distorted, bright synth shines before Star Madman’s emotive, warm vocals slide in along with a throbbing beat that is light and distant. The vocal melody is yearning and full of expectant hope and delicate synth glimmers in misty clouds.

There’s a caressing shine to the music over the steady pulse of the beat, the entire song full of air and ease. The vocals distort and move in a vibrating line while flashes of glittering synth light pierce and the dance-floor beat slips along smoothly. The emotion in the lyrics suits Star Madman’s vocal style. The track is gentle and trembling as synth clouds flow out around the other elements and the deep bass oscillation and beat now fill the space.

The narrator tells the person to whom the song is addressed that they’ve already won her and adds, “don't you think it's kind of funny we should end up like this.” Her concern for making the other person feel fulfilled is obvious as she asks, “What can I do to make you love me? How can I feel your heat above me?”

She goes on to ask the other person to keep her close and “enfold me.” She points out that the other person told her not to fear them and adds, “control me, I hear you.” There’s a pleading feeling as our narrator says “But I can hold you tight and I can treat you right” as she emphasizes that “I can be your light, every day and night.” Her strong commitment is clear as she adds, “I won't say goodbye. It's always you and I. Until the day we die.”

Even though the other person makes her “feel a little crazy” she still is glad they came into her life and saved her, making it all worthwhile. She goes on to say, “there is so much left to discover, you know I don't want any other” and asks what she can do to make them smile.

There’s an interesting twist as she says, almost in awe, that she can feel the other person coming. She asks a touch nervously, “Why don't you say something? Are you dangerous?” She states simply that she needs them and asks, “Can you hear me callin’?”

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She concludes, “I've already fallen. I am serious.”

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