Hailing from Australia, multi-instrumentalist and musician Alec has delivered a soul and blues EP, entitled Inspired By Animal Instincts. Having written, performed, recorded, and mixed all the tracks himself, Alec is the definition of the modern one man band. The EP’s overarching theme is mental health through self awareness which Alec hopes will help foster healthy conversation, especially among Australia’s indigenous youth. Below is FDRMX’s track-by-track review of the EP Inspired By Animal Instincts.
Number One: “Feeling Good” opens the EP with strong hits on an acoustic guitar with beautifully simplistic sticking and high hat work from the drums. A trumpet adds a little flavor between Alec’s vocals, “Feeling good / Yeah but good isn’t easy / I get up I get up/ and I fall to the ground / When I’m lonely and I’m feeling self assured / You will always see me through.” Electric guitar joins in on the bridge adding a bit of grit to the tune.
Number Two: “Can I See You Again” brings in the classic Rhodes keyboard sound that makes a track instantly soulful. As the track name suggests, it’s a hopeful tune with a bit of playful enticement. Alec’s lyrics are soft and smooth, if a bit repetitive. The trumpet wails a solo over the prominent keyboard backed by acoustic rhythm guitar.
Number Three: “Friends” adds a bit of indigenous Australian flavor with didgeridoo droning underneath the sweetly plucked electric guitar on this ballad. The track has a distinct gospel ring to it, when backing vocals support Alec’s paired with an organ on the choruses. “Sometimes you need a friend / someone who understands / sometimes you need a friend to hold / Someone to hold on.”
Number Four: “Drift” has a mournful tinge. “Drift up to heaven on a boat,” Alec intones, “You gave me strength / You gave me hope / You gave me humor / You gave me faith.” The trumpet is as soulful as ever, while the arpeggiated electric guitar creates a dreamlike effect. A rather serious waltz of a ballad, you really believe Alec has got the blues with this one.
Number Five: “These Walls” – well speaking of blues… Though less doleful than the previous track, this song definitely fits the bill, complete with aching guitar solo. “No one knows / No ones sees / He hides behind these walls / Oh these walls,” he howls. This one also features some of the more complex lyrics on the album, building mystery and intrigue.
Number Six: “Katerina” presents a wider range of instruments than heard so far on the EP. Deep, big horns blare in contrast to acoustic piano, orchestral bells, cymbals crashing and splashing, and even a bit of jazz guitar. Alec sings with yearning, “It’ll all come down / For you I’d die.”
Despite the slightly unvarying lyrics of a few songs, the six tracks of Inspired By Animal Instincts definitely congeal together, melded by the awareness theme. Alec’s heart and soul is clearly infused in this EP, audible in his presentation style and unique music arrangements. Give it a listen on SoundCloud. Find out more about Alec on his website and Facebook.