Van William’s bleeding heart may be eternally affixed to his sleeve, but very few songwriters can make the therapeutics sound so fun. Known for the meticulous alt-pop song craft of his former acclaimed indie outfits, Port O’Brien and WATERS, on The Revolution EP, his first solo effort released fall 2017, Van William (nee Pierszalowski) offers an auspicious glimpse into a promising future.
Always the creative force that fueled his musical endeavors, William’s newfound independence allowed room to roam in fresh and exciting ways. These four new tracks, a piercing song-cycle about the pain and disillusionment of lost love, have a dark, messy edge as William’s consistently dazzling melodies and stirring choruses carry the emotional subject matter to striking affect.
With its irresistible refrain and exquisite arrangement, the EP’s title track, “Revolution” featuring acclaimed Swedish folk duo First Aid Kit, is a textbook example — a perfect hook tempered by one of the saddest, smartest lyrics you’ll ever hear. Similarly, “Fourth of July,” “Never Had Enough of You,” and “Cosmic Sign” (Demo), all sparkle with vulnerability, bittersweet sophistication and William’s honeyed, yearning tenor. An enthralling introduction, (his full-length solo LP is due early next year) Van William’s The Revolution EP signals the arrival of a truly gifted, young artist on the rise.
SONTALK is the duality that exists in all of us. It’s stream-of-consciousness songwriting. It’s dissonance – distorted synth lines, fractured beats, and warped slide guitar. It’s emotional terrain. It’s a journey of self-examination and redemption. It explores the rift between who we desire to be and the person we discover we actually are. It accepts fragility. It celebrates honesty. It’s not perfect. It’s what it means to be human.