Esman H is an independent artist from Diamond Bar, Calif. (@esmanh_music / Instagram)

Arts and Entertainment

Review: Indie artist Esman H’s ‘Iron 5’ sets a baseline for growing artistry

The original inspiration of the now notable local indie music artist, Esman H is the idea that every journey has to start somewhere.
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alecmwong

August 30, 2021

The original inspiration of the now notable local indie music artist, Esman H is the idea that every journey has to start somewhere. Hailing from Diamond Bar in Southern California, Esman H is, in my opinion, one of the rising music artists of this generation who shows promise.

He has been able to consistently release songs that defy expectations. He explores a different unique style of music that is very special, and I feel, needs to be talked about. 

For casual listeners who are unaware, he is a full time student, music artist, professional gamer, and online influencer. He dips into multiple topics about him personally on this track, relating to his everyday life experiences, one of those being about the struggles of playing in the lower ranks of his game of choice, “League of Legends.”

The lyrical genius of Esman H can be found within the simplicity of his writing. Nearly all of his songs include lyrics, and they are all more complicated than they initially seem. In his song “Iron 5,” the lyrics focus on the popular top AAA rated gaming title “League of Legends.”

In “League,” the system of ranked gameplay is organized into tiers; nearly 60% of the League player-base plays in the average ranks of bronze and silver, and in his song, Esman H directly speaks to players who perform poorly in the lowest possible rank in the game. 

The lowest rank is actually Iron 4. Esman H’s song about “Iron 5″ basically is about an imaginary rank even lower than the lowest rank. Iron 5 itself has never existed as a rank. It has had many different names such as “wood” or “dirt,”  but the concept of there being an imaginary tier bracket lower than the lowest possible rank, Iron 4, has existed for a long time within the League player community.  

By referring to the Ranked environment of League with repeating lyrics like, “just go to, iron (yes) iron 5”, Esman H expresses the frustrations of playing the game. In his song bio for ‘Iron 5,’ Esman H uses the word “troll” to describe his ranked teammates.

In the League community, trolling a game could refer to many things, with one of the most popular being purposely playing poorly with the intent of losing the game for your team. This could also tie in with the repetitive and monotone nature of the song, which reflect how the same problems happen in every game, and he is discouraged from trying anymore. 

As an artist, Esman H is one who tends to lean more to the simple side of musical structure, such as two choruses with a single verse that is stuck in between them. He follows a very similar pattern compared to many other currently popular music artists. This particular style of music has been on the rise in recent years, and signifies a much darker change in music as a whole. 

In my opinion, Esman H played it too safe with the music structure of this song. With the song being as short as it is, Esman H could have instead included one long verse that was the entire length of the track instead of his two choruses with one small verse in between. 

From an artist’s perspective though, I understand why this structure was put into place, as this was the first official song released under Esman H. 

Critiques aside, I would like to commend Esman H for the otherwise very well structured song; even though it is not the type of song structure that I would have prefered, it is still very easy to see a good song when it is written. There were a lot of ways for Esman H to structure the message of the song during the song’s creation, but the way that Esman H chose his structure allows us to enjoy the song in a different way. 

In terms of the tone of the production, this song is somewhat moody, as there is a lack of emotion coming from the background instrumentals. Esman’s vocals compliment this very well as he specializes in that low energy, slow day kind of vibe that many fans would attribute to the classic Esman H style. Even though, at the time, Esman H was still figuring out in what direction to take his music, he already was capable of producing stand alone tracks that could hold their own against my expectations.  

I plan to compare Future Esman H songs to this one, just because in my opinion, this song is the baseline of what I would like to hear from Esman H. The production does not sound too overwhelming or complicated, but it is just enough to where it keeps my attention and does the job well. 

The last thing that I feel like needs to be addressed is the likelihood of the song being added to my daily playlist. The catchiness of a song is important because this can actually show a lot about an artist’s potential. For example, if an artist is able to make songs with a consistent high replayability value, or is very addicting, they are more likely to find success because of the fact that people will be playing their songs over and over again. For this reason, I feel like Esman H has a lot of potential in music. This song has phenomenal replayability. The chorus and verse are very easy to memorize and sing along too. 

During my first listen, it was almost as if I could predict what was going to come next in terms of lyrics or melodies. This is a good trait that makes “Iron 5” very addictive or catchy, but can also be labeled as “repetitive”, basic, or cliche by some music fans. Regardless of such criticisms, this tool is very powerful, and if repetition is used correctly, Esman H can create songs that have even higher replay value, growing his audience because of it. 

Overall, I would like to see more music like this from Esman H as he has provided a solid first impression of the type of music that he will go on to make in the future. Out of 10, I would rate the song a solid 5, as there are things that need to be improved on, but it is also Esman H’s first ever single. I can imagine myself coming back to this song in the future, but it is not going to be on my everyday playlist. 

Esman H provides us with strong lyrics, simple but solid song structure, mediocre production value, and good replayability. Even though it is not as versatile as records from many more established artists, “Iron 5” opens the door for success in Esman H’s musical career.