Carleton Stone - Iceblynk - Rosanne Baker Thornley
There’s a fantasy about show business that we’ve been fed since performers started offering up their hearts on stage for public consumption. The glamour, the jet-setting, and the parties all get played up over the reality of the whole thing: a career that seeps into your real life and can dismantle your relationships, the exhaustion of the road, and more than a few hangovers. On his third solo album, the self-produced Papercut—armed with a couple lifetimes of songwriting and touring in his rear view mirror—Carleton Stone gets honest about the toll of devotion to craft while illustrating his mastery of it. Through sax-blasted Americana, power-pop laced with ‘80s synth, and dreamy, sophisticated pop melodies, the Nova Scotia songwriter blurs genres to explore a tumultuous few years and some of the scariest questions someone can ask: what the hell have I done? What if I’d gone down some other path?
“And what are some of the things that you lose when you decide to live your life like this?” Stone says. “There are parts of it where you experience the highest highs, things that feel so rare, you know—performing songs you wrote in front of sold-out audiences all the time or shit like that. I don’t take any of it for granted. But there are sacrifices, too: your relationships with your family and your friends and significant others can suffer, and you’re always on the road. There’s collateral damage, and I was thinking a lot about that, and about things that might’ve been.”
The result is Stone’s strongest and most candid songwriting to date, and finds him plumbing the depths of those feelings without succumbing to despair, gracefully switching between genuine moments of melancholy, anger, hope, self-deprecating humour, regret, anxiety, and bliss.
You don’t make music for this long without making some talented friends, and along with the aforementioned players, Papercut also features Liam Jaeger (bass), Howie Beck (percussion), Kevin Fox (cello), Tom Moffett (trumpet), Julian Nalli (saxophone), Mel Stone (vocals), and Erin Costelo (vocals). It was engineered by Stone himself, Darren McGill, and Aaron Goldstein at Union Sound (Toronto, ON), Gold Standard Recorders (Toronto), and The Loft (Cape Breton, NS), and mixed by Howie Beck. The album also spotlights some of Nova Scotia’s most compelling talent in its co-writing credits, which include Breagh Isabel, Leanne Hoffman, Dave Sampson, Dylan Guthro, and Kayleigh O’Connor.
======================================================================Iceblynk - Tragic.
Queens, NY-based trio, Iceblynk, have announced their debut, self-titled EP will be released on October 21, 2022 via A Secret Brand. To celebrate the announcement, the band has shared their lead single “Tragic.” “Tragic” is a nostalgic indie-pop tune that expertly showcases singer Andrea Lynn’s cheery vocals as well as the instrumental prowess of Martin and James Newman.
“The EP is titled ‘Iceblynk,’” shares co-founder Martin Newman. “It’s our introduction to the world and represents who we are in the present and hints to where we’re headed in the future and what to expect from our full-length next year. It’s also an introduction to the name change.”
“We chose to release ‘Tragic’ as the introduction to our EP as its driving force and evolving richness of tightly interwoven guitars lock in the listener from the start,” adds vocalist Andrea Lynn. “While the vocal melody has a light and bright feel, the lyrics hint at a growing sense of despair/dissolution, creating a playful dissonance.”
“Production-wise, ‘Tragic’ began as a clean, jangly-pop song with a slightly quirky chord progression,” Newman continues. “But as the recording process went on and our pandemic spending increased, we added Gamechanger’s Bigsby pedal and Mastro Valvola’s Lysergic Energy Module to the mix, and the guitars warped into something more along the lines of My Bloody Valentine crossed with Emma from Lush, which gave the song more of its edge and dreamy textures. By chance theremin extraordinaire Pamelia Stickney happened to be in town while we were recording, so to break up the onslaught of guitars, we had her lay down a solo during the bridge.”
Rosanne Baker Thornley - Sorry I'm Late.
“The narrative that runs through this album is – life and the pieces of that journey. The insights. The moments of awe. The losses. The lessons. The determination to continue on” says Rosanne Baker Thornley. ”My inspiration comes from everywhere. From experiences and of people both good and bad. From the simplicities that live between the complexities, I have an inherent want to capture those moments and describe them.” So began a new creative journey for Thornley, and in this journey, a quiet and extraordinary shift occurred; fuelled by the magnetic musical pull that she has fed for years.
Based in Toronto, Thornley has been evolving and expanding her relationship with music (and writing) for quite some time. With her new album, Sorry I’m Late, she further delves into her craft, cultivating songs from an intensely personal space. “As my songwriting years have evolved, my writing is more grounded in writing what I know. In searching my heart and writing that. To be honest. To be vulnerable. To be brave.“ She has worked to distill those emotions that are experienced across generations, and she sheds light on the experiences and stories that have the ability to be profoundly moving. “There’s prescience in what I do. I’ve written many songs on the premise of what I thought I was writing about only to find days, months, sometimes years later that I wrote the song from the future. And though I don’t yet fully grasp the how of that, I simply let myself go with where it takes me and write it all down.” It is precisely those joys, discomforts, and authenticities that accompany vulnerability – and she has channeled those feelings into an expansive and intimate collection of songs.
Emerging on the Canadian music scene years ago, Thornley established herself as the lead vocalist and principal songwriter for ‘Daystar’, ‘Niteskool’ and ‘Bakersmith’, a critically acclaimed album “Courage” via Sony Music – as well as through repeat tours of North America and Europe – garnering both national and international media attention. From her base in Toronto, she established her reputation one show at a time, and had audiences connecting to her stories. Over the past few years, Thornley has continued to hone in on her exceptionally gifted writing talents by working with (and co-writing on) a myriad of artists albums, EPs and standalone singles. With brand new music on the horizon, Thornley has her sights on reconnecting with fans and igniting a renewed interest in her music.