‘If Only I Could’ Stop Crying to Alicia DC’s Newest Heartbreak Single!

Isn’t it fascinating how we know falling for someone could go so wrong? We could end up falling face-first and shatter the most important part of us that keeps us alive – our heart. But still, it’s a risk we’re willing to take. When the worst does happen, the mind is plagued with the “what if”s and “if only”s. Singaporean singer-songwriter Alicia DC documents these regrets and reminisces about her lost love in her newest single, If Only I Could.

Alicia DC, also known as Alicia Diva Chandra, is a singer-songwriter, composer and aspiring music producer based in Singapore. She describes herself as a free soul who loves to learn as much as she can about the world of music, which explains her broad exploration of various genres. While she is known for her jazzy grooves and R&B music, she broke away from her usual style to create a pop album in her second EP, Lovergirl. She also ventured into acoustic sound in bodyclock, and electronic sounds in her previous single, Bridges

More About ‘If Only I Could

But If Only I Could is a little different from it all. It’s a raw expression of post-heartbreak ache. Listening to this song feels like a post-break-up healing sleepover with Alicia, who whips out her guitar and sings your innermost feelings in song in a cosy bedroom at 3am as the rain pours. Wrapped in an arrangement of foley sounds and fingerstyle guitar, Alicia uses the simplest words to express the pain that plagues her soul. She documents all the “if only”s that haunt her mind as she tries to recover from the pain with straightforward yet relatable lyricism.

The song starts with about seven seconds of what sounds like a horrendous thunderstorm before the bright strum of a guitar greets you in a stark contrast. I found the use of thunderstorm sounds so poetic, as if mimicking how even the universe was unleashing a deadly downpour to mourn the loss of love. Using this sound also sets the stage for the mood of the song. It paints a very Pinterest-esque scene, reminiscent of a dramatic movie scene – staring blankly into the rain as your heart wales in pain. 

Although, the difference between the two tones is a tad jarring. I wish this rain and nature-based motif continued throughout the song, perhaps with the sounds of the rain, for more cohesiveness. While I did hear some sounds scattered throughout the song, it was tough to tell what they were; hence, they didn’t add much to it. Adding more noticeable sounds would make an otherwise simple production more profound and even poignant.

Nonetheless, Alicia nails the emotion of the song with the melancholy in her voice against the strumming of the guitar. And those additional layers of harmonies that fill your ears as the song progresses? Absolutely ear-melting. Not only is it beautiful to listen to sonically, it packs so much emotion into the song. It’s as if we’re hearing her cries of pain, for help, and for love. It adds a lot of meaning to the song, making it even more soul-wrenching to listen to or, worse, relate to.

She repeats the words “if only” throughout the song as she recites everything she regrets. She repeats the phrase “if only I could” throughout the chorus, too. It personifies the way these thoughts enter her mind, haunting her to no end. The repetition echoes her pain as she keeps reminding the listeners how she would do things differently if she could turn back time so that her heart wouldn’t hurt as much as it does now. 

And when the guitar stops as she sings, “I’ll say that/I miss you”? It’s a goosebump-raising moment. It’s as if she finally comes to terms with the fact that she doesn’t just regret the moments but actually misses her lost love. It almost feels like we’re witnessing the stages of grief, which could have been delivered better if further developed in the lyrics. Nonetheless, it depicts an effective use of instrumentation to convey a message with more depth, something that was a little underused in the song but could lead to so much more.

“The words in this track are simple, but the harmony is constantly twisted, just like how saying the words ‘I Miss You’ seems to be a simple thing to do, but actually carries a lot of hidden grief, regret and yearning. ‘If Only I Could’ is precisely about this difficult, heavy feeling, and trying to move on from it,” Alicia DC shared.

This track is a straightforward yet raw delivery of the pain Alicia’s soul feels after losing love. Its simplicity is what makes it a moving piece to listen to in the abyss of the night when the warm, safe blanket of daylight leaves us. But for a track that’s supposed to convey a “difficult, heavy feeling”, I was hoping for more depth in the lyricism to express precisely that. But sometimes, you don’t need all the fancy words to make your soul feel seen and heard. That simplicity could be more comforting than any other words to ease the pain.

More about Alicia DC

Alicia debuted in 2022 with the release of her first alternative jazz EP, Maybe, a result of the *SCAPE Music ALT. Residency Programme, where young musicians are paired with mentors to help develop their original works into published tracks. She worked with established industry professionals such as Weish, Isa Ong, and Leonard Soosay to complete her first EP release.

Over the past year, Alicia has also been involved in many local showcases, gracing prominent venues with her beautiful presence, including the Esplanade and the Singapore Art Museum. She’s also showcased her craft at local art festivals such as the Singapore Night Festival and the Waterloo Singapore Night Festival. Oh, and she also opened for Korean American R&B artist Hojean during his show in Singapore in June 2023!

In such little time, Alicia has bravely explored the world where she feels most herself to find what is truly her sound. As she ventures into this journey, we can’t wait to see her growth as she bestows upon us more tracks that heal our souls and let out all our different personalities to sing and jam with Alicia!

Alicia DC – If Only I Could

If Only I Could by Alicia DC
Sitting alone on a train track in the darkness of night – yes, this girl is heartbroken. Someone get her ice cream!

Check out If Only I Could on Spotify and Apple Music for a soul-stirring heartbreak song that will have you deep in your feels. Stay tuned to Alicia DC on Instagram and TikTok for more! Catch more of Alicia in her fun vlogs on her YouTube channel, too, along with other music goodies you’d love!

Visuals courtesy of Sherwin Lam.

Baani Kaur

Aspiring to achieve great heights like every human in the world, but till then, enjoy the most dramatic and sarcastic person you will ever read from.

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