If singer-songwriter Scharliina were to be admired for one quality, resilience would be a strong contender. Having undergone therapy to combat an eating disorder, the musician used this period of convalescence to write about the very resilience that was aiding her recovery. The result is ‘Maybe’ – a grandly presented ballad that falls tidily between the chamber pop and dream pop genres in both delivery and messaging.
Scharliina’s work as an actress and her experience as a performer in groups that fall outside these genres make her a relative newcomer to this style. The Swedish vocalist – still in her early twenties – writes, performs and produces. She’s an exciting prospect but one that should be allowed to grow. ‘Maybe’ is the single that may facilitate this growth.
Melodically pleasant, its strength is in its mixing – coalescing piano, strings and percussion with meticulous instrumental balance. Conversely, the song’s relative weakness is lyrical – the empowering message becoming lost within a clunky vagueness. While proclamations like ‘the war within me I will win/no caption needed’ allow listeners to project their personal meanings, they are also non-specific. As such there is an emptiness to ‘Maybe’ that is saddening giving the emotional warmth evidently poured into it.
Regardless, one cannot deny Scharliina her vocal ability as she crisply slides to her register’s highest notes that are breathy and powerful in equal measure. It’s a bold and admirable moment of musical catharsis – a suitable launchpad for Scharliina to grow.