The latest album release from Proverbial Cool Aid comes through with a gorgeous array of honest and heartfelt classic, pop, and indie rock that all bring an atmosphere together that lets the artist wear his heart on his sleeves but in his own particular way.
This is something you catch on to a few songs into the album because it doesn't take long to realize that these songs seem to serve as chapters from his own life but when you listen to them, they're so relatable that you feel like they could have served as chapters in your own past and that's what makes the record have such a heavy connection to the listener.
You get this nostalgic feeling but it's not from the music it's from the words.
Everybody loves a record that bears honesty because it shows who that person is on the inside.
More than a few songs from the new 2023 album let you into his personal thoughts and even feelings and for me listening to it pulled up feelings of my own.
This is hands down, one of the most important factors throughout this entire album.
You can feel from it, and it makes you think. Two major things that are hard to come by when it comes to music and a lot of different genres these days.
Proverbial Cool Aid was certainly digging deep with the creation of this record, and it doesn't seem like it was anything too stressful or painful for him, but more cathartic if anything.
Musically, this record spans such a lush and wondrous array of genres that bring in different instruments and elements that let each song become its own unique thing as well as being part of the bigger picture.
You have piano-driven contemporary rock songs and songs that have killer pop-rock hooks that kind of stick with you for a long time, but each song actually means something to the artist and that's something you feel when you're listening to a song.
These songs definitely came from someplace real and genuine which makes everything all the more authentic and in turn really pulls you in further.
By the time you get halfway through the album, you come to realize that you should be expecting the unexpected because there are surprises around every corner of this release which in my opinion is very refreshing.
Now, there are more than a few songs on this record that stand on their own two feet as singles and each one has its own persona. However, listening to this record from beginning to end as a whole, is the way this was supposed to be soaked in because it's almost like a diary for a story.
You want to get from beginning to end so that you can feel satiated. And you do if you listen to the whole thing.
You get a much better picture of who this artist is as a human being, his history, growing up, his inner feelings and thoughts, and a lot more if you're into an artist, is something you simply want.
You want to be connected and feel like you just listen to a friend talk about everything to you.
This is exactly what this album delivers.
There's some really excellent guitar work strewn throughout the record all played with heart and soul and you also get elements of southern kissed, Americana, and even country elements that peek their heads through here and there, and those elements really round the record out.
I would certainly suggest taking some time, popping on some headphones, and listening to this record all the way through because it will easily spark memories of your own, and when a song does that, you're captured.
With this wonderful album release, we wanted to have a fresh talk with Proverbial Cool Aid to dig in a little more about this record.
Here's what went down.
Buzz Slayers: Welcome back! So, let's talk about the 2023 album because it felt like it came from different chapters of your life in a way. It was catchy and pop oriented but got very personal lyrically. Was this record cathartic for you to create? What was its inspiration?
My inspiration? Well, my inspiration was that I knew that I could compete. I knew that I had some good material, some good ideas, for a new record. I also was just in a really creative space.
Buzz Slayers: This is a very full-bodied album that spans some different styles and even genres throughout it. Were you influenced by mainly rock and country artists?
You know, that's Proverbial Cool Aid. That's my style. The first record was the same way. I work on and I finish the ideas that interest me at the time. That's the beauty of me being indie right now. I don't have to ask, "hey, is this material ok for this record." And this new record IS full-bodied. So was the first record. A lot of people don't realize that the first record was recorded almost 15 years ago. I was a kid. But, yeah, this record, and the first record, I worked on many different types of stuff for them. I wanted full-bodied, well-rounded projects. I used session players on songs that I knew could really bring my material to life. And, yeah, one song, Houston Time, IS country. And a few songs are Americana. And one or two are metal. I work on and finish what interests me at the time.
Buzz Slayers: Does this record hold some nostalgia for you? It did for me. Certainly lyrically.
It does man, yeah. I poured my heart into this record. I was coming off a sickness when I started writing this thing so maybe yeah, I was a little vulnerable. But there is inspiration and truth in all of this material. My time in LA. That first love as a kid. That one that got away. I pulled from many past experiences to write this thing. And then there was a sickness I went through you know. That's what the instrumental Sick is about. The violent nature of something that I went through during my illness. Buzz Slayers: I get such a vibrant feel from some of these songs like "The Stand" for example. Were any of these songs recorded live on the floor?
I think 4 songs were recorded live as a full band. The rest of the songs I recorded in the most time inefficient and costly way possible. I'd go in a day here, two days there. I re-recorded several things. It cost me way more than what a fully rehearsed band could do going in all together at once would cost. But, you know, I worked with what I had to work with at the time. I pushed through all the obstacles. Buzz Slayers: What are you performing on the recordings instrument wise?
Well, of course, I wrote all the songs. Vince B and JQ Musiq have a songwriting credit on Sick & Pool Hall. They wrote the Pool Hall piece of that song. I wrote the music. On the rest of the songs, I'm playing all the rhythms, and most of the leads, and, of course, all the vocals. When my band was in fragments, though, I brought in friends of mine, and session players, to do some of the parts. The drums here. The bass there. I had a couple of friends like Francisco Grandi and William Hollis put some great tracks on a few songs. I asked and had a lot of talented people and friends contribute to this record. Earl Wang, Miguel Barajas, Matt Burgon, Glen Ackerman, Tyson Sheath. Some of the most talented musicians in Houston are on this record. I was honored to have such great musicians play on my stuff. And then me and some of those dudes would go out and play shows. It's been fun. Buzz Slayers: How were you introduced to music? I am hearing some classic rock, Americana, and so much more here. Did your parents play you records as a kid?
I've been into music since I was about 8 years old. My Dad was a folk guitar player. I started with piano lessons when I was 8 years old. I did that for about 5 years or so. I took a year or so of violin lessons. Then, at 16, I picked up the guitar. I started writing guitar music and messing around with lyrics right away. At 16 or so. I wrote a song on the first record, Southwestern, when I was 16. Didn't record it until I was already out of college. But I wrote it at 16. But, yeah, I was always into music. Buying tapes and cd's. The first tape that I ever bought, I think my Mom bought it for me at like 8 years old. Van Halen's 1984. I've always been into music and had a music collection of my own.
Buzz Slayers: So many of these songs feel like they could be in movie scenes. Are you at all influenced or inspired by films?
I am, yeah. Some of these songs sure could be. Yeah, I love the movies. Buzz Slayers: You are set to do a pretty good tour soon is that right?
We are going out in late Oct. For almost a month we will be on the road. I think there's 21 dates, 14 states or so. It's daunting. Nah, I'm looking forward to it. I think my guys are too. Buzz Slayers: Is being a recording and touring musician what you thought it would be? What are the ups and the downs?
I think people want to know this. So, we've had a couple of California shows. That's really all of the travelling with my music that I have done up to this point. My bassist and my drummer have toured. But, I have not, though. This will be my first tour. I will let you know that answer down the road. Buzz Slayers: This was a wonderful record, and you should be proud of it! Do you feel satisfied with the release?
Yeah. I'm happy with it. It's a great record. I'm happy with it. Buzz Slayers: Thank you for spending some time with these and we look forward to more from you! Is there anything followers and fans can expect from you next?
Well, we're hitting the road now. To go play the record. And when we get back, we are going to be playing some more home shows. And doing some regional stuff. You never know where we'll pop up.