Track Review: Kieran Mercer: Anarchy

‘Filled with sophistication and strut-inducing musicality, it’s an ironically harmonious listen.’

Intro to Kieran:
Hailing from Vancouver, British Columbia, solo artist Kieran Mercer has been on a long musical journey to get to where he is now. Releasing his the groove-filled ‘Give
it to Me’
on Spotify 5 years ago, Kieran self-admits that he has only now – through working with producers Stephen ‘Koz’ Kozmeniuk (Be The One – Dua Lipa) and Michael Wise (Electric Love/Firewater – Serena Ryder) – that he has found the sound he’s been striving for. Taken from his forthcoming EP ‘Fools Gold’ Anarchy makes for an ironically harmonious track which stylishly blends
Kieran’s vintage influences with up-to-the-minute mastering.

Featured Track: Anarchy
Setting off with an immediately funk-infused sound, Anarchy feels more positive than it’s title would suggest. Driven by a combination of dominating drums, mid-pitched bass lines and palm muted electric guitar chords, it becomes incredibly infectious. Involuntarily you develop a swagger and aided by Kieran’s relaxed vocal, the perfect balance of warmth and understated sophistication is found.

Moving into the initial verses, the lyrics of ‘I see the red and blue light’s flashing’ carry us seamlessly into the next part of our strut-inducing musical journey. Processed with subtle echo and reverb, delicate depth is added to the track without detracting from Kieran’s effortlessly clear musicality. Taking this further, the development within the second of these back-to-back verses subliminally encourages us to enjoy the emerging atmosphere. To be fair, the encouragement isn’t needed, but the added musicality is most welcome.

With Kieran continuing to showcase his understanding of musical ebb and flow, a sudden change in texture occurs. Beautifully drawing our attention out of the verses and into the pre-chorus, the percussive elements abruptly vanish. Generating a much sparser sound, it provides perfect contrast while carrying us to the more guitar led chorus. While there are – as you would expect – distinct differences here, the established, laid back atmosphere is maintained giving a real sense of unity.

Heading to the track’s mid-point, Kieran’s musical craftsmanship once again comes to the fore. Cleverly altering the sound – but staying true to its origins – the instrumental influences heard to this point are transferred to the lyrics. Effortlessly transforming from its solo form, Kieran’s vocal becomes accompanied by a multitude of harmonic and call-and-response style backing vocals. Based on the recurring lyrics of ‘Out here on the streets… it’s Anarchy’, the track leaves its studio sound behind and transforms into one that sounds like a sophistication filled live performance.

The sophistication doesn’t end there though as on reaching the latter parts of the track, alternations of the earlier instrumental, vocal and textural elements occur. Montage like in arrangement, a real sense of anticipation emerges and continuing to musically tease us, further unexpected changes occur within the final verse. However, with the previous care-free sounding vocals breaking through the interweaving accompaniment, we reach a joyous sounding finale where Kieran’s musicality proves to be anything but Anarchy.

Follow Kieran Mercer on: Twitter and Facebook.
Listen to Kieran Mercer on: Spotify 

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