Thursday, May 30 2024

Kwolek is an artist, producer and songwriter from New Jersey who’s known for blending various music eras and genres into his tracks. He grew up in the sounds of the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s spanning alternative, disco, new wave, punk, grunge and indie rock. But, what’s clever is how he manages to create a new and fresh sound. Formerly a touring member of Lima Research Society, Kwolek now channels his energy into studio work. In his latest release, ‘Ronnie Stole This Riff / Kim Is Desperate’, he blends two songs and two stories into one great listening adventure.

The opening segment, ‘Ronnie Stole This Riff’, kicks off with an infectious and interesting synth riff accompanied by fuzzy guitars and an unconventional drum pattern. With nods to new wave and vintage indie rock, the track’s vibe reminds me a bit of The Pains of Being Pure At Heart but infused with Depeche Mode and even some MGMT. The lightly saturated vocals are processed in a way that fits the song perfectly. It all adds to the listening experience. After a minute the song goes into second gear with a new layer of synths adding power. It’s a very catchy track and as the song progresses, additional layers of synths and guitar riffs inject newfound energy, making it irresistibly danceable. Kwolek’s signature lies in the ever-evolving structure, ensuring each moment remains engaging. No two bars are exactly the same. Although he keeps the song coherent, I can’t deny that it’s hard to get a grip on the structure sometimes.

Transitioning into the second segment, ‘Kim Is Desperate’, the track sustains its dynamic energy with a captivating instrumental backdrop. While it may not feature the layering found in the preceding section, it serves as a complementary piece that intertwines effortlessly with the overarching narrative. It’s great songwriting. Combining two ideas in one song isn’t easy and demands courage, but Kwolek does it with confidence, keeping it engaging throughout.

The song is about Ronnie and girlfriend Kim. Kim always has her headphones on in search of a song to save her life. Then a cool chick at the mall turns Kim on to Ronnie’s tape “We dance until the batteries die.” Though the narrative is straightforward, Kwolek proves that complicated lyrics aren’t always necessary when the music speaks volumes.

‘Ronnie Stole This Riff / Kim Is Desperate’ is a great executed concept of blending two songs and two stories together. While the track’s five-minute duration may seem daunting, its ever-shifting nature keeps listeners on their toes. Kwolek’s vocal performance is solid and the production is top notch. It solidifies him as a standout artist with a distinct sound.

In conclusion, Kwolek’s new release shows his musical talent, his courage to innovate and his ability to push boundaries. With its catchy melodies and genre-defying approach, ‘Ronnie Stole This Riff / Kim Is Desperate’ is a must-listen for music enthusiasts seeking something fresh and exciting.

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Review

Summary

Kwolek’s latest release ‘Ronnie Stole This Riff / Kim Is Desperate’ blends two songs and narratives, creating an unforgettable fusion of nostalgic vibes and fresh sounds, showcasing Kwolek’s talent and boundary-pushing creativity.
77%
Unique Approach

Rating

Song Quality
Vocal Performance
Instrumentation
Lyrics
Production
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About Author

Gee Nelson

Gee Nelson has been a musician, producer and songwriter since the '90’s. Besides music Gee loves reading, writing, watching British sitcoms and playing board games. His biggest influences are Green Day, Nirvana, Offspring and Eels. His favourite genre is 90’s and early 00’s (indie) rock.

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