LA-by-way-of-Toronto singer-songwriter Abby Sage deals in echoing subtlety, writing songs that nearly seem to reverberate with wounded wisdom. Her latest single, the endlessly patient, gracefully jaded “When I Leave” is the perfect sampling of just what makes her slow burn balladry so affecting and bracingly her own. It washes over you in surprising ways, its gentle insistence gradually building tension (complete with beautifully mournful strings) to the point of imploding – yet, Sage never quite pushes us past the age, teetering with grace along a knife’s edge of fear, longing, and, ultimately, regret.
“I fuckin’ hate it when you call me darlin’,” she slowly utters, following a narrator that gradually comes to lose just what she wants the most, due to her fear – or inability – to express herself with her partner.
Speaking on this sense of loss, Sage shares, “It’s about trying to communicate to somebody that you love them and want them to stay but fear ultimately prevents you from saying anything. The song ends by saying ‘I fucking hate it when I leave’ because in this case, I let pride and fear get the best of me and walked away from something I didn’t genuinely want to walk away from.“
The single is the latest from her approaching EP, the ever-so-appropriately titled Fears of Yours &Mine. It promises to delve ever deeper into Sage’s starkly gorgeous, pained minimalism, and is due to arrive come November 12th.