By Brandon McCarthy
Just to set the record straight: I am a devout metalhead. I live and breathe hard rock and heavy metal. The ferocity, aggression, and flair of the music set my soul on fire. Personally, I am not the biggest fan, when it comes to pop music. Most pop artists sound the same to me, singing songs about love and partying, basically setting lyrics to music created on a laptop. When it comes to heavy metal, they can say the same thing. However, there is one artist that I have come across, who is very different from the others, and a pleasant surprise to me. All the way from Northern California, I present to the fans, Taylor Grey. Trained in classical opera, Grey is an artist who is revolutionizing the pop music scene. She has a knack for combining the styles of jazz, classic rock, and 1990s hip-hop to bring us a pop alternative, that has the power to cross over into different generations of music. By doing this, she creates her debut LP, Space Case. I was ready to take a leap of faith, and go into a world that is strange to me, yet alluring.
What I really enjoyed about Grey was that she strives to be a different from all the other pop megastars, like Lady Gaga or Katy Perry. Her voice is as gentle as the wind on most songs, especially with her tune, “Higher.” She is like a combination of Taylor Swift and Norah Jones. She stylizes her beats by incorporating a bubble gum pop beat with some cool hip-hop rhythms and smooth jazz. Her tunes have a nice dance quality to them as well. The best part about her dance songs is that the listener does not have to boogie to it hard, but rather, more delicate. A good example would “Don’t Wanna Wake Up,” one of my favorites. Grey is very talented when she adds elements of piano or acoustic guitar.
Her first single, “Fallin’,” is a work of genius, featuring The Vamps frontman Brad Simpson. The way their voices sync with each other makes the song more sweet and lovely. It may sound like a typical sappy love song, but there is substance and quality in the songwriting that makes it more special. She also teams up with Spencer Kane for the hip-hop flavored, “Miami.” It has great flow to go along with the words. Her best song is “Come Back” because I loved its energy and somewhat apparent vulnerability. Grey is singing about an old flame that she hopes will come back to her eventually. I understand why she chooses to use 90s hip-hop in music, because I remember it had superiority in the music world; everyone fell in love with it.
I was just truly surprised by Grey’s album. I thoroughly enjoyed it, from the beginning to the end. She is a treasure in this genre of the music, whose value will only expand over the years to come. Space Case has certainly become my secret guilty pleasure, when it comes to listening to music. I anticipate that Grey’s star will continue to shine in the sky. This does not mean I have grown accustomed to pop, but as long as she keeps making music like this, I will be anxious to listen to what she comes up with next. To Taylor Grey, I salute you. Horns up!!! 8.4/10
1. Miami (Featuring Spencer Kane)
3. Never Woulda Letcha
4. Miles Away
6. Don’t Wanna Wake Up
7. Fallin (Featuring Brad Simpson)
8. Space Case
9. Wild Bird
10. Open Road
11. Come Back
12. Say You Love Me