Artist and songwriter Alsea Diana leads with a distinctive sound and songwriting style throughout this new EP.
From the opening delicacy and contemplation of Tiffany Rae, there’s a clear sense of identity and intention to the writing and production, even the tone of voice and the quiet, intimate portrayal of the story-line. These qualities continue throughout the EP, with simple, often guitar-led ambiances meeting subtle trip-hop rhythms to form a dreamlike support for each new exploration of feelings and scenes.
Homecoming follows and delves into this format all the more so, with long-from verses and a simple, hypnotic composition. Certain moments give off a slight work-in-progress feel, but these actually tend to reinforce the realism and authenticity of such an honest and open creative style.
Verse 5 sees things change direction quite significantly. You can still easily pick out Alsea’s voice, it remains recognisable regardless of what occurs elsewhere, but musically we get a somewhat industrial, fast-paced chaos of sound for this one. Furthermore, only a select few lyrics stand tall – I love you so so much lingers for its clarity and isolation where it appears; the way it loops, the change in melody. The whole thing feels like a fragment of a dream or memory – a clever addition to the project.
With Vampires, guitar and sound-play unite once more, forming a quickly addictive groove. Meanwhile a spoken-word vocal takes things right to the centre of contemporary social media living. The mixing of these two elements, the artistic loop and the somewhat more surface-level conversations laid out, is really well executed.
We then get this unexpected falsetto hook, a sudden injection of poetry, and with this comes further depth and contrast with the implied shallow aura touched upon elsewhere. The latter half even veers off into emo territory, with a satisfying melody and a subsequent mild explosion of effects. Slowly but surely, we start to get an image of Alsea Diana as a creative producer, an artist, as well as an intriguing songwriter and performer.
707 Blessed ends things well, driving with a reverb-soaked guitar riff, a distant choir of vocals, and a heavy sense of rising anticipation. There’s a level of longing to the vocals here, and they make up the vast majority of the song’s experience – in line with the contrasting weight and fuzz of the descending bass line.
That emo thread peers through again, but it’s met with more creative production, and a manner of sound design that wholly encapsulates the ideas and feelings at the heart of the writing. These aren’t songs placed upon backing tracks, these are entire expressions, fully crafted with intention and soul. I look forward to hearing how Alsea’s sound develops further as time goes by.
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