Sawing through the speakers with a glistening polish that borders on saccharine in tone – yet still feels entirely relevant to the structuring of the opening bars – the synthesizer in Ty Blue’s “Occasionally” is most everything we decry the instrument for being on most occasions, but here, it’s the catalyst for a dam-burst of catharsis that will come flooding our way only moments from now. Ty Blue is throwing a lot of weight around with the brawn of her instrumentation in “Occasionally,” and while she’s never been one to hesitate in a harmony, she’s perhaps more swaggering in this performance than any of her critics were expecting her to be. It’s 2020, and as far as I’m concerned, this artist makes herself a mandatory follow in this latest effort. 


Despite the synthetic nature of the melodies in this song, there isn’t a spot of inorganic content for us to try and look past in the chorus, nor the ascent we travel to reach its super-sharp hook. The funk, rock and electropop influences are too broad and conceptual to be ignored, but there’s not an overly experimental vibe to the layering of the verses at all. Everything runs through Ty Blue in this performance, and through both the cadence and tone of her lead vocal, she makes it very clear just how authentic her emotions are and, maybe even more importantly, how she can implement them into most any component of the mix. She defies the beat in several instances and separates her words from the underlying groove, but nonetheless, her voice is more than powerful enough to change the direction of the entire track before we’ve even realized what’s just happened. 

The chorus here is the strongest of all the pop elements in the composition, but I think it’s important to note that under no circumstances does “Occasionally” ever feel like a hook-driven song. There’s just too much spunk, too much unfiltered angst in the buildup to the release for me to consider this single as singularly creative as some of the biggest chart toppers of the summer have been, but in my book, that isn’t a bad thing at all. If you look around the American underground – and the mainstream, for that matter – you’ll find a genuine shortage of artistic credibility, which only makes a player like Ty Blue feel like all the more of a treasure once you’ve found her for yourself. 

I only discovered the complete works of Ty Blue from 2107 to present just recently, but having given her discography a close analyses over the past week or so, I think there shouldn’t be any debating her eminence in the New York scene once this recent piece finds a home somewhere in the college radio spectrum before the year comes to a conclusion. She’s got the voice, the vitality and the virtuosic ambitions to accomplish some things that a lot of her forerunners set out to do in their own time (but frequently came up short), and now, it’s all a matter of steering clear of the influences and fluff that bring down musicians of her caliber all too often. 

Garth Thomas