Peyton Marie is drawing on life and all the emotions we face for her debut solo EP Stranger to Myself. Through the three tracks, she touches on anxiety, relationships and Imposter Syndrome. Drawing on different genres, the EP has a foundation in alternative pop with a sprinkling of contemporary soul for a wonderfully different sound.
The EP is the first Marie has done on her own after leaving her band to focus on her own music. Using the experience she gained over the 5 years with the band, she recorded the tracks partially in her bedroom and her cousin’s studio. After facing a number of obstacles when creating the EP, she has been able to release it for the world to see just what she has on offer.
The title track ‘Stranger to Myself’ opens the EP with an honest contemplation of life and the difficulties we all face. The pulsing tones pull you into the music which rises and bubbles against your ears. Marie’s vocals have a sombre feeling that is a little at odds with the tempo of the music. This contrast is wonderful and brings a new vibe to the song. When the chorus hits, everything does become lighter and the vibe continues on a new trajectory. There is a feeling of understanding of emotion that comes at this point while the lyrics still carry an edge of darkness. This is a wonderful song that takes on a lot of topics in an engaging manner.
‘Blue Valentine’ has a retro feeling to it as you are drawn into a very shoo-wop movement. There is a more soulful feeling to the vocals on this track that is bordered by alt-pop. The interplay between the retro feeling of shoo-wop and Marie’s modern vocals is utterly wonderful. You are easily caught up in the movement of the arrangement which has a delightful intricacy to it. As you ride the waves of nostalgia in the melody, the lyrics touch experiences that most people can relate to. The richness of the track is very different to the opening song and just showcases the versatility Marie has to offer.
The EP comes to a close with ‘Liar Liar’ that opens with a deep droning bass full of dark-pop sensibilities. The clicking tones cause tension to rise in your shoulders while Marie’s vocals bring negative emotions to light. The almost ethereal backing vocals on the chorus add a new depth to the song. There is a lot more going on in this song than you first imagine as you ride upsetting emotions only to find vindication and strength. If you are in need of a song that is melodically confrontational while empowering you, this is the one you want.
Peyton Marie is hitting the ground running with the diverse and amazing tracks of Stranger to Myself. Each track on the EP uses a different genre and style to pull you into the emotions and the story it tells. While each song can easily stand on its own, together they form a comprehensive introduction to the versatility and musicality Marie has to offer.