When Shae Brock released ‘Mary Jane’ as a single earlier this year, she introduced us to the sound of her EP Was It Real Or In My Mind?’. Now, the rest of the EP is out for our listening pleasure as it takes us on a journey of what might have been if two people had never met. Through the tracks of the EP, she details the diverging roads of life that happen due to chance meetings and simple decisions.
Based on a dream she had of never meeting someone, she has built a vibrant sonic world of thoughts and possibilities. This is blurred together with the haziness of not knowing if this is real or if everything was just a dream. A wonderfully new take on the different paths of life, the EP showcases deep connections, nostalgic vibes and Brock’s musical abilities.
The EP opens with ‘Cosmic’ which has a really gentle and soft opening that draws you into the single. Through this softness, the electric guitar breaks through before retreating. This is a wonderful sonic device that creates an almost dreamy soundscape where reality tries to break through. Brock’s vocals are emotive as she calls clearly across the soundscape. There is a wonderfully tender feeling to her performance as she draws you into a contemplation of emotion that rides the movement of the guitar. The interplay between the elements of the track is wonderful and has you floating along the sounds. Her high notes are utterly beautiful and add something extra to the track.
‘Mary Jane’ has a more seductive feeling to the soundscape as the thrumming bass wraps you in silken threads. Her vocals offer a velveteen slide of warmth as she introduces you to the titular character and has you falling under her spell. The seduction is tempered by a melancholic edge of feeling unable to match Mary Jane. The complexity of the emotions in this track is amazing and Brock is able to deliver them with effortless ease. Her vocals are relatable while rich and leave you in awe of the power of her musicality.
The almost folky opening of ‘Wish’ strums through you with a rainy day vibe. This feeling is enhanced by the vocals that are reflective and sombre. The story of not meeting someone and the paths this leads to is laid out through the lyrics of the track. Brock’s vocals bring the emotions which are as complex as the last track but hit in a very different way. She is able to fill you with the loss of not knowing someone you already do while glimpsing at the lives that could have been. There is a steady flow of sadness resting in the lower levels of the track that tugs at your heart.
‘Dazey’ has a hazier feeling that comes through in the opening as the melody seems to be coming to you through a mist. This gives way to a great moving beat that has you bopping to the sound. The lighter and almost bright energy of the track is a delightful change from the last track. Brock’s vocals are really catchy on this track as they make you want to sing along, particularly on the chorus. As the single progresses, the haziness of the opening comes back with a heavier electronic edge which is a great addition to the soundscape.
The EP ends with the airy and dreamy tones of ‘Made Love To You In My Dream’. The acoustic strumming of the guitar has you swaying to the rhythm while the vocals are a pastel mist that hangs over the music. The vocals have a light echo to them that enhances the dreamy vibe of the track. The electronic guitar adds texture to the softness of the single that makes you want to close your eyes and just give in to the movement. The connection detailed in the lyrics enhances the feeling of the EP where you don’t know if this happened or if it was purely in our mind.
Shae Brock balances reality and dreams while contemplating what could have been through the tracks of Was It Real Or In My Mind?. Each track has a unique feeling that mixes softness with grounded emotion. Through the EP, she showcases her musical prowess while filling us with emotions and quizzical thoughts of what might happen with different decisions.