Skip to main content

INDEPENDENT SONG RELEASE: Van Bellman, “All This Time”


Singer, songwriter, and guitarist Zac Taylor actually wrote this song two years ago for Connell Cruise who shares a label with Taylor’s other band American Authors on Island Records. However, Cruise missed out on recording the song after moving back to South Africa and winning “Dancing with the Stars.” Life is funny that way. Nonetheless, Taylor held onto the song because he knew he had something.

“All This Time” was released around Valentine’s Day as a tongue-in-cheek ode to the commercially-fueled holiday. It’s a song about missed relationship opportunities and regret, not exactly topics you’ll find written in flourishing script inside too many greeting cards.   

Speaking of “flourishing,” the Van Bellman song starts out with an ornamental, happy-go-lucky string intro. This is followed by Taylor’s saccharine voice: “If I tried to forget you / Would you remember to haunt my dreams?” / If I finally let you be the ghost underneath the sheet?”

When the strumming guitar and slow tempo drums come in, the song finds its true momentum. The chorus is definitely catchy enough: “After all this time, I still spend all this time on you…”

Afterwards, the song finds our narrator standing outside his crush’s window and throwing rocks at it, not caring if he wakes up the neighbors. The importance of regaining his chances with her are just that massive.  


The most powerful part of the song (as it most always should be) is the bridge following the second chorus. “…here chasing your ghost / Sick of chasing your ghost / They all have your face / but with different clothes / I scream out your name / but it scares you away…”

The emotion and elegance of the song’s sound grows larger as it nears the end. Imagine Coldplay without Chris Martin’s fake humility. Taylor then ooh ooh’s his way to the end, but this highlights the melody, rather than serving as a lazy stand-in for actual vocabulary.

“I’m mainly a guitarist,” Taylor says, “but I love writing on piano because I can come across some happy accidents. That’s where the piano riff came from: a toy piano gathering dust in the corner of Mission Sound studio with one broken key, which you can hear in the track if you listen closely.”

Like this article? Please, comment and share!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

INDEPENDENT EP RELEASE: CarnyMusic, “CarnyMusic”

Mike Carnahan’s “CarnyMusic” is a solo project from the lead singer of The Green Door, which also happens to be the name of a cannabis store in San Francisco, Carnahan’s hometown. Not sure why I’m pointing this out, except that it just seems to fit. The Green Door are one of those trippy, Cali groove bands, same as Swell or even The Grateful Dead, whose tunes go best with bong hits. I love heady music, so I’m excited to hear Carnahan’s new EP, expecting the same sonic experimentation and strong lyrics.
The release begins with the sad acoustic number “Riptide,” which lets me know right away this going to be a more mournful and contemplative endeavor from what Carnahan has released previously. “It’s hard to stay long,” he sings, “when I’m just hanging on.” Uh-oh, what happened? However, the slow-strummed acoustic guitar does make a nice compliment to Carnahan’s sometimes unsteady voice. 
The folk feeling continues with “Beetle in the Sand,” my favorite. It's about wanting protection f…

INDEPENDENT SONG RELEASE: Elise Hayes, “Giving Up”

“You never wanted me to get that tattoo,” sings Nashville recording artist Elise Hayes. “I’m going to get that tattoo.”
This the start to her new single “Giving Up,” (co-written with Johnny Mo) which is about not giving up, an ode to post-relationship defiance. There is freedom in being your own person again, even if you were the one dumped.
The music itself is a tapestry of sorts: sonic styles patchworked together into a compact yet pleasing mix. Pounding drums and sitar give way to softer guitar, then back to drums, which sometimes beat rapidly as a door knock. A wake up call. The song often stops and starts as if her thoughts are coming to her in jagged fits as she’s singing them.
“You never wanted me to have that haircut / Well, now I do…”  
It’s a hard style to pull off but Hayes does it effortlessly. She is a strong singer/songwriter, doubtlessly helped in her confidence from being featured in TV shows, such as “Grey’s Anatomy,” MTV’s “Siesta Key,” and others  She has also written s…

INDEPENDENT SONG RELEASE: Ethos, “V: Parents”

Ethos is the stage name for Alex Hlavna, a 19-year veteran of the Cleveland, Ohio music scene where he played guitar, bass, and drums on numerous recordings. He has now released his own song entitled “V: Parents” from his new album Ten Commandments. The V is the Roman numeral for 5, as in the 5th Commandment: “Honor thy father and thy mother.” 

Each track on the album is titled this way, named after a commandment. Is this some type of “religious rap” or is Ethos being metaphoric? The actual definition of “ethos” is “the characteristic spirit of a culture, era, or community as manifested in its beliefs and aspirations.” Judging from such a moniker and from statements he’s made in interviews, it seems his goal is more about making observations, rather than instructing us that “thou shalt not whatever.” It’s a more provocative approach.

The song is a funk-bassline over an electronic beat and soft synths. Meanwhile Ethos’ voice is anything but soft as he raps about honoring your parent, yet…