In today’s age, technology has flooded our lives with content. Caught in the mire are modern musicians who champion an art form that’s more widely distributed than any other throughout human history. And we, more often than not, overlook the music created by unfamiliar faces because it’s challenging. We’d rather have an easy listen, a known quantity to skim through while we think about something else.
Hearing is easy, but listening is difficult. Welcome to “Why We Like It”, where we rebuke the trends in favor of thoughtful analysis and underknown sounds.
“Space” — Abigail Sernal
How We Found It
Phillipino singer/songwriter, Abigail Sernal, teaches us a meditative lesson in our SubmitHub inbox. As she drops her debut album, Through & In Between, Sernal gives a piece of herself to create a community of personability in her art so listeners can better understand where she’s coming from.
Why We Like It
Taking a step back to compose myself has been a skill I have had to learn over the years. I used to think being in the moment and taking all the emotions at once was the most genuine way to be. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned that it takes a huge toll on my mental and emotional health trying to keep up with that mentality. It’s in fact detrimental and I had to change. In my change, I learned space and that it is okay to protect myself from certain reactions. The concept of a “mental health day” hadn’t existed prior and now it’s something I take as much as possible. Abigail Sernal’s “Space” is a song that mirrors the experience I had with my own journey and resonates with that part of myself.
The writing process for Space came really fluidly to me despite feeling very overwhelmed at the time that I wrote it. I was going through the first cycles of break-up and juggling a lot of responsibilities at my job while also trying to work on myself and my relationship.” – Abigail Sernal for CentralSauce (2020)
Beginning with a muffled voicemail that’s frustrated with Sernal, the production drizzles gently into the track. Over R&B styled rhythms and grooves that include a glittery piano, warm baselines, and crispy, smooth drums, Sernal croons with a voice as light as a summer breeze as she reflects on what’s led her to needing space. She goes day by day and is slowly but surely getting overwhelmed by the events taking place around her until she’s had enough. She has rage, pain, and frustration from a relationship that’s hurt until the heart she’s carrying is sunk to the depths of an abyss she can’t get out of. Instead, she removes herself from the situation so she can further assess it and find her heart again.
I need some space to contain all these emotions / They’re getting out of hand / I need some space, an escape from all this rage / It’s getting out of hand, do you understand me / Took me years to process all this pain, gave you all my devotion” – Abigail Sernal “Space” (2020)
In the space she’s created for herself, she’s left room for air to breathe to swim up and finally see everything above the clouded waters of the mind that’s bogged her down. Sernal is seeing the situation and herself for a full view of what’s transpired. She’s no longer reactionary and jumping at the bait of the situation. She’s found a piece of peace in a never ending sea of emotions and learned to float above them as she takes it easy. The lesson is mimicked in the sound of her music. She’s serene and subtle in her approach now so she can move forward.
After hearing this record, I made time for myself. I gave myself the room to actually process all the changes in my own life as well. From previous breakups to financial switch ups to my own bouts with creativity, I could finally take it all in and just accept it. I don’t have to love it all but I can live with it. The importance of removing oneself from a toxic or harmful mental or physical environment couldn’t be more apparent. So in this record, I found my own space to be myself and for that, I’m thankful.
From Abigail Sernal
Recording “Space” gave me an outlet to kind of achieve that time to really sort my thoughts and process my feelings. I think the purpose of this song initially was to kind of extend my emotions through music, just wanting to express what I can’t necessarily convey through conversation, at least not the same. But now, I can see a lot of people relate to it and that’s okay. Life can be so overwhelming at times and sometimes, a little space is exactly what you need to decompress and this song is the perfect one to just vibe to and sort of escape.” – Abigail Sernal for CentralSauce (2020)
More From Abigail Sernal
More to Discover
Subscribe to the CentralSauce mailing list so you never miss out on the freshest sauce. Check out this continuously updated playlist of songs Tyler has added to our Discovery section! Each track or artist has been featured in our “Why We Like It” section, so be sure to check out the page here on the site.