REVIEW: “Too Many Times” from Salt Ashes brings pop-rock catharsis
Since 2013, Salt Ashes has been lurking in the shadows, waiting patiently to burst into the spotlight. Her gothic pop origins have evolved over time to become more polished, more radio ready. “Too Many Times” is the synthesis of this evolution. Yes, the music video for the song features Salt (or Veiga Sanchez, as her birth certificate calls her) as a Burton-esque doll and involves a dance between her and her shadow self, but the song itself is fresh and approachable.
There is some slight dissonance created in this separation of sound and aesthetic, but Salt Ashes is far from the only artist to do this. Allie X and Poppy have also explored the realm between darkness and light, heavy rock and light pop, with success. Salt Ashes sits somewhere in the middle of those artists, incorporating the heavy guitar that a Poppy song might, but never diverging into the tongue-in-cheek territory of Allie X. Not to mention, Salt Ashes is much too sincere to be as campy as either artist.
Not every aspect of the track or its promotion hits just right; the “too many times I didn’t love myself” line is just slightly too plain to convey any emotional gravity, and the doll bit in the video is more or less a rip on Melanie Martinez (and I thought we were past that!).
Regardless of its flaws, “Too Many Times” is a catchy pop rock song that carries a clear personal statement from Salt Ashes: She’s not going anywhere until she reaches the top. I’d love to see her do it.