Seven Layer Piano Cakes – Middlegame (2021)

Blending elements of alternative rock, electronica and classic rock, Seven Layer Piano Cakes (SLPC) is a truly genre-defying artist. The brainchild of classical pianist Justin Hoyt, who also happens to be an attorney and law professor, SLPC lies somewhere between Elton John, Hozier, Justin Bieber and Spandau Ballet.

While this is the first time I have heard of SLPC, the LA-based artist has featured on notable blogs including A&R Factory, Jammerzine, Edgar Allan Poets, Ghetto Blaster Magazine and several online radio stations/podcasts. Grabbing the attention of audiences across the globe, this artist (for what he does is artistry) is gaining a reputation for eclectic, innovative music. One of the latest additions to his discography is ‘Middlegame’.

In contrast to his single ‘The Patriarch’, Seven Layer Piano Cakes steps away from the Queen-esque rock sound adopting a more electronic sound in ‘Middlegame’. While I expected a piano-laden track from SLPC, I find ‘Middlegame’ to have a synth-driven approach with steady drums keeping pace. This does not mean SLPC has abandoned “regular” instrumentation. In fact, it is the interspersed piano that enhances the melancholic poignancy of the single. Moreover, dynamic guitar riffs can be heard showcasing an edgy attitude in the sonic whirlpool.

Intimate and powerful, ‘Middlegame’ has an eclecticism that is extremely exciting. Fusing various genres with acoustic instrumentation, Seven Layer Piano Cake finds the delicate edge between organic and synthetic. Yes, the melody is overwhelming and can stir your soul, but it is Hoyt’s raw vocals that send chills down your spine. Nostalgic and whimsical, there is an innocence in his tone. The thing is, while the vocals have a tender charm, there is a lingering sense of introspective reflection.

In addition to the single, Seven Layer Piano Cakes released an instrumental version of ‘Middlegame’. You can view it on his YouTube Channel.

For more from Seven Layer Piano Cakes check out his Instagram and Spotify.

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