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.
𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙁𝙖𝙡𝙡𝙤𝙪𝙩 𝙞𝙣 𝙔𝙤𝙪 - 𝙅𝙪𝙣𝙞𝙤𝙧 𝘽𝙤𝙣𝙚𝙨
Charles is your dealer…
Sometimes you look back at things you've done and wonder how you managed. Sometimes it was a doddle to you. Other times it nearly killed you. But either way, you managed. The songs I wrote years ago were definitely more towards the former. The flatpack IKEA desk I built last week would definitely be more towards the latter. Sometimes you look back at things you've done, and you cringe. The face crunches up in repulsion. That song I wrote called ‘Library of Love’, for example… Sometimes you do things for a very specific reason, that seemed particularly important at the time. Sometimes things are simply forgotten. A moment in the past that apparently happened, but it either seems so insignificant that your brain hasn't seen or realised any worth in holding on to that memory, or that it conjures deep, dark memories that you would rather not think about. This is how we deal.
Dealing with things comes in multiple guises. For example, when faced with this IKEA desk, I had no option but to build it myself. Sure, I could have summoned a professional IKEA flatpack desk builder (yes, these actually exist - this is a profession), but I can’t afford that. Therefore I had no option but to build it on my lonesome. With a screwdriver, as I have no power tools strong enough to make it any easier. I also have no huge workbench. So, freshly back from a couple of days in beautiful Bath in England, there I was with half a day set aside, bent double on the floor of my living room, sweating and cursing, cursing and sweating. Legs trembling from an inexcusable lack of exercise, blistered right hand (from the screwdriver) and useless left arm, from carrying the bugger up the stairs in the first place. But after several hours, I succeeded! It was like winning a trophy. This was my task, and I dealt with it. Had I not, it would still be lying there, taking up considerably less space than when built. Time was not going to build it. My aching limbs however will heal, in time - yes, they’re still recovering. Pathetic. Those of you who know me well enough to say you know me, will know that I like to ignore my own recent advice of getting help from others, and do it myself. Because it feels good in the end, to know that you did it yourself. Also, sometimes there just isn’t a choice. As I said in that article a few weeks ago, if you CAN do something yourself (do it WELL, I mean), then do. And so I did. If you can’t, seek help.
As things go, though, this was a pretty easy task to deal with. I was not faced with a bill for tens of thousands of pounds, dollars, euros, pesos, yen, francs or lira. This was not someone close to me suddenly dying (some things though can feel worse than a death - death puts a lid on it, so to speak). And neither was this trivial ordeal of mine, (sigh) becoming single again… I pray “becoming single” never occurs again. It is crippling. And for me, by far the worst thing to happen to me. Several times. I remember some pretty horrific things from past relationships that I would really rather not talk about (he will though), or even think about (he will though), as it makes me shudder with terror. It brings back the darkness of the time. Ya know that “it’s not you, it’s me” thang? Well it’s a lie. A stone cold lie. It’s not me, it’s YOU! Or them, anyway. The first line of that cringeworthy song I wrote was, “Open up my Library of Love”… You see, in the past I have gone for very attractive, crazy lunatic girls. Why are the most attractive ones almost always nuts?? I remember one who kicked me in the stomach while I was on the ground in Camden Town (London) at 4am. Why was I on the ground? Because she shoved me to the ground. Why were we in Camden Town at 4am? Because we were young. And why did she kick me? Because an hour earlier I offered to buy her a sandwich. But of course. She apologised the following evening in a way that was as if she had done something so appalling like raise her voice over dinner. And then proceeded to cheat on me that very night, with what I could only call a human slug. And then broke up with me the following day. Surely EYE should have been the one doing the breaking. Well, either way, I broke. That’s love! I would really rather not go through all that again. And I am pretty damned sure that is not going to happen to me again. Thank Christ. There are good things about getting older. But memories are memories, and there ain’t nothing we can do about it. Save a lobotomy, or simply talk about it. Which is what I am doing right now. Ahh, and it feels good to get it out in the open. The only other option is to ram it deep down inside, in the hope that it never rears its ugly head again. Not the wisest option… Better to deal with the contents rather than leave it flat-packed.
“Other halves” can be cruel and vindictive when it all goes up the spout. Sure, they’re all peaches and cream when it’s “the honeymoon period”, but newness is always fun for a time, until the peaches ferment and the cream goes sour. Ryan Temby, the Melbourne based lead singer and songwriter of Junior Bones has experienced similarly dreadful situations. As have many of us. But it is always more interesting when it happens to an artist - otherwise we wouldn’t have the blues! Artists can create a good thing from a bad thing. It is a very healthy notion and attitude. Not to mention a damned useful tool for dealing with things. Better than a screwdriver, in this instance at least. Let’s go back a while. 8 years, to be precise. It was a bad time for Ryan. His relationship was in tatters and had come to a bitter end. But that was not all. The situation came with heavy baggage at no extra charge. Emotional abuse, financial blackmail, and moving back in with his parents in his early 30s. And this was not the first time he had had to go back to the fold-out couch in his parents’ office… Temby needed to help himself. SAVE himself from drowning. The idea was to write and record a simple acoustic song about it all, in order to get it all out of his system so that he could move on. And never to play or even hear it again. He did just this. To an extent, it worked. To an extent. But still it occasionally poked him from the other side. Could it be that Ryan still had demons to deal with? Could it be that the song was perhaps better than he had initially thought and maybe wasted in a locked box…? I think maybe a little of one and a lot of the other. 8 years later, he played the demo to the band for the first time. They loved it, and instantly heard the potential if morphed into a modern pop song. And so they got to work. While the band was busy recording their respective parts, Ryan naturally healed. It was the full completion of an unfinished chapter. Like radiation to a toxic cancer - you may feel weak for a while, but much like my aching limbs, you will recover.
The Fallout in You, released just days ago, is the latest single from Junior Bones, and I think their best so far. The band is certainly on the rise in terms of music, writing, production and quality. We just need more ears on the music! This where I come in - it’s my job to get people to take note and listen. Let’s explore. Paul Inglis briefly starts us off with a duo of synth and guitar, before Gavin Kerr rudely interrupts on the drums. Tom Bullock is firmly on his side, keeping rigid time with the bass. It is slow, but oh-so powerful. And it is here and now that Paul gives way to the man himself, Ryan Temby. His confidence has evidently grown over those 8 years as he croons the major scale in a cold manner. Cold like a coastal stone. Weathered like a coastal stone. But living, invigorating and somehow ever youthful, like the coastal tide itself. He has been to the depths of the ocean, but is now on the crest of a wave. He somehow manages to blend confidence and fragility so well, and so effortlessly, that it must be genuine. The skin has healed, but the scars remain as an everlasting reminder.
This song has such bold weight through its journey. From its softest, most delicately sparse sections, through its indie rock roots and electronic pop elements, and its huge sweeping orchestral flourishes, it covers the feeling of having listened to an entire LP, yet is simplistic and natural in composition. It just works, with mature elegance and impressive depth. Sometimes things just have a way of falling into place. I personally did some final production on the song and then mixed it. It makes me proud to be a part of such a great song. Finally it was mastered to a high standard by Ludwing Diaz. Ryan and the boys like to have multiple sets of ears on hand for the ultimate result.
Bad things happen to everyone. Most of these things we just can’t foresee. So we are forced to deal with the consequences. Although maybe depressing and certainly somewhat daunting, I believe this to be a good thing. It drags us out of our comfort zone and makes us stronger. It might at times feel like a test of one’s strengths and weaknesses, but I assure you it’s just simply part of life. With great success, Ryan has eventually won the battle, with the help of Paul, Gavin and Tom to complete this dark journey. The light at the end of the 8 year long tunnel shows the power of music.
A young Britney Spears once sang, “Don’t ya know that you’re Toxic?” - That's love! Deal with it.
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