“More Than a Number” is an uncomfortably potent reminder of police brutality and racial injustice
The video to this latest single released in late-March by Dublin-based songwriter and producer Chris Kabs is visceral, uncomfortable, and potent in its stand against police brutality and racial injustice.
The music video for the track, which was released on April 30 and beautifully shot by director Gerald Walsh, is not only a reminder of the ongoing issues of police brutality and racism, but is an even more damning visual assessment of how desensitised society has become to such violent acts, even when they are being committed by those tasked with upholding the law.
Lyrically, “More Than a Number” is also explicit in its themes of racial injustice and police brutality. Chris’ lyrics are a call to listeners to think and reflect on the lives of those people caught in the literal crossfire, by humanising them rather than simply as “a statistic you see on TV”.
The track’s main refrain however, contains arguably the most damning line of the entire song, summating the both issues extremely succinctly, “But they’re shooting us/When they’re supposed to protect us”.
Musically, “More Than a Number” is very much rooted in dancehall, and is alluringly lush and tranquil despite its topically serious subject matter, complete with jazz-inflected lead guitar lines and piano motifs.
However, while such a contrast between a feel good instrumental and serious lyricism may sometimes leave a lot to be desired, it is a key part of the track’s appeal, helped in no small part to Chris’ warm and invitingly sincere delivery.
“More Than a Number” reminds us that music which embodies the sound of summer should never be a distraction to trying to bring about lasting meaningful change.
Chris' success extends beyond that of his own music. As a producer, Chris has seen success with the singles “Ozone” (which was featured as part of the FIFA 20 soundtrack) and “Oh Lawd” (featured in the acclaimed TV series Normal People) by JyellowL, the latter featuring Aaron Unknown.
“More Than a Number” marks Chris’ second solo release of 2021, following “Your Ex”, in addition to coming off the back of his Unlucky in Love collaborative album with Sean Silke, in addition to several more successful singles and collaborations.