Premiere: Melanie Taylor's electric new self-titled EP is her reinvention
When it comes to pop music, it is rather easy to get lost in a flurry of bad autotune, undercooked lyrics and lackluster melodies so nauseating they make your head spin. LA-based singer-songwriter Melanie Taylor shatters all those expectations, carving out a pop niche as throwback as it is contemporary, as massive as it is intimate and as raw as it is polished. She previously issued a studio full-length in 2012 called All About Today -- which, she has said, was her "learning curve album" -- but four years removed and she is a far more self-possessed master of her craft, a female warrior on the prowl and (conversely) a sensitive willing to make herself completely vulnerable. "I'm no angel, so I'm told, got a few rough edges but you believe passed what they see, took me from those cages," she unfurls on the guitar-soaked "Vices," lifted from her brand new self-titled EP -- premiering exclusivelytoday, via AXS.com.
"I've released an album previous to this one but I kind of feel like this is my first for a lot of reasons, which is why I decided to self-title. To me, this collection of songs is at least a beginning to the unique style and voice I want to express in this industry, and it was a wonderful journey filled with wonderful people who helped me figure that out, as I personally grew as a person as well. At the end of the day, I just hope people relate and the songs make people feel good. That is my ultimate goal in making music," she shares with us of the project, officially out later this week.
She conjures up an alarming resemblance to Alanis Morissette -- not exactly in timbre, but in her inflection especially on cuts like "Magic" and "Dizzy." While she honors the past with tremendous fervor and daring, she makes damn sure to press her music against the glass of the future. She texturizes her work with blustering guitar solos, as found on the delicious "Taste" standout, nuanced synth-pop echoes (the rocky "Take Me Under" is one of the EP's more sinister moments, musically) or completely throws in a clever vaudeville hat-tip in "Perfect Crime" (which later unravels a smokey, tribal through line and one of Taylor's most impassioned vocals).
Taylor may only be flying under the radar now, but if 2017 has its way, she will become a superstar.