Welcome all to 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘆’𝘀 𝗖𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗲𝗿, a series of weekly reviews by Charles Connolly - an artist in his own right. Here, Charles delves into the greatest brand new singles brought to you by the best unsigned artists on our electrifying and eclectic set of 𝙉𝙚𝙬 𝘼𝙧𝙩𝙞𝙨𝙩 𝙎𝙥𝙤𝙩𝙡𝙞𝙜𝙝𝙩 playlists.
𝙇𝙚𝙩 𝙔𝙤𝙪 𝙂𝙤 - 𝘽𝙞𝙡𝙡𝙮 𝙇𝙤𝙬𝙧𝙮
Charles something something (for want of a better something)…
Another week, another review. Another plod through the same old words in a different order. Sorry to put you all through this ordeal every week. I suppose it could be worse. Death is worse. Yeah, my reviews/articles/musings are better than death. There we go! And who says I’m not a positive optimist?? As opposed to the negative variety… The Easter weekend left me with good vibes. It treated me to family I have not seen in over two years. It also treated me to something else I have not experienced in quite a while. A hangover. This ghastly, heavy, HEAVY feeling. I have tried the English cure of “Plink, plink, fizz”, and I have also tried the American cure of “Plop, plop, fizz, fizz”. Those who know, know. Those who don’t: accept your fortunate lack of pointless knowledge and move on. My brain, however is chock-full of pointless knowledge. Nothing useful whatsoever. I think to an extent, it is what makes me, me. I may have listened to a LOT of songs over the years, and I may ADORE music in general, but I am far from any kind of trained music theorist. There is probably a better term, but like I say - I know nothing useful. Who wants to read that kind of in-depth jargon anyway? It would bore the panties off me. And so I turn to imagination. Usually, anyway. Today, My imagination is snoozing. Deeply. Where it is normally a lithium-charged sparkler, right now it is little more than a twitching twig close to decomposition. I am useless to you now. Lobotomies are us!
Gaaaah. Oh Jesus, why oh why does one consume so much fun-juice when the time seems right? Today’s negative to yesterday’s positive. Gaaaah. The yin to the yan to the why. And so I start the search for something soothing. A song that won’t be too painful to my fragile state. A song that heals rather than peels my skin to reveal the rawness within. Maybe something lo-fi? Perhaps acoustic? Well, I am professional enough to forgo (weird looking word) my own current taste and mood. It just wouldn’t be fair to the artists making heavier music. I must give an equal opportunity to all artists, no matter how it makes me feel right now. I must summon the strength and be brave. CC must have courage, even if it means clenching his buttocks. I can’t just find something good, I must choose something that gives me words. Words from me to you. Oh words, where are you? My imagination is flat and lifeless. I think someone else needs to take over from me for today. Someone new and fresh. Someone not afraid to be different. I must not let my readers slump with me. That would be downright cowardly, and that’s just not how we do things at the New Artist Spotlight - oh no. Support is everything. Not blind support though. It must always be honest - and it always IS!
It is a continual joy to discover such great new music every week, but I am particularly excited when there are brand new artists in our ever-expanding group/society/cult. Take a couple of weeks ago, for example: Junior Bones were very new to the New Artist Spotlight. It makes me so proud to be a part of it all. It also makes the group more current and living. More organic and real! So when I discovered Billy Lowry, I was over the moon (despite feeling like I had hit my head on the way out of the car). Billy has not only been with us for less than 3 weeks, but he is also an astounding musician. He has what I lack right now - imagination. Imagination and originality in abundance. Lowry grew up on the edge of Lake Washington, in the state of - you guessed it - Washington. Which is a far better state than I’m in right now. In fact, Billy has the kind of exhaustive talent that will make you feel sick, envious or just make you want to give up entirely. To name but a few of the instruments he plays: guitar, piano, bass, ukulele, kalimba, ocarina, French horn, harpsichord and accordion. Oh, and he sings. I mean, really. This is absurd. And he doesn’t just dabble. Billy uses his imagination to great effect in building and creating something truly unique in his debut album full of wonder - All The Same Monster. I have honed in on the track Let You Go, to really showcase the man’s abilities.
Despite his multitude of talents, Billy also brought in Paul Sears on drums, Gregtronic on synth, Ron Cook on harmonica, and Chris Skowron on sax. This is NOT music for a hangover. This eclectic musical orgy might have had Frank Zappa quaking in his boots. In fact, I can’t really mention ANYTHING it sounds like. Predominantly, Zappa and King Crimson spring to mind, but also there is even an element of Black Sabbath on steroids. So you see, the influences are too disparate for any cohesive parallel. In short, it is original. And in short, the song is indeed just that: short. At only 2 and a half minutes, it manages to cram in SO much, with death-defying speed. The guitars, bass and drums power through from beat one. The energy is not just released, but violently propelled with illegal gunpowder. There is an awkwardly disjointed lurch that puts your bones out of place. Like a frayed fingernail repeatedly catching on a loosely woven silk. The rawness of Billy’s voice is simply exhilarating. This could be my current disposition, but I’m getting cold sweats and deep chills. Even tremors. A whole lotta shakin’ goin’ on…
If I were allowed only to use one word to sum up Let You Go, it would be: frenetic. Downward spiralling chromatic arpeggios puncture the relentless angular nature of this tantalising composition. Forget “song form”. Verse verse chorus verse chorus bridge chorus chorus. That tends to be the usual. Billy don’t do dat. He does what he feels at the time, au naturel. As artists tend to. Lowry’s imagination knows no bounds. His music takes you to the limits of your imagination, then jumps the fence and keeps on running; his kite high in the sky. With a hot head and being deeply in need of cool strokes, comfort is what I crave right now. But maybe this isn’t the correct prescription. Maybe I need the musical equivalent of the hair of the dog (a phrase with which you may or may not be familiar)… Something to snap me out of my fug. Sometimes it’s good to go outside your comfort zone. It keeps you virile! Succumb to the powers that be, and let Billy Lowry take you elsewhere.
The things I do for your entertainment…
On that note, I’m all out of ideas - I’ll let you go. Time for another “Plink, plink, fizz”.
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