Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Get Contemplative with Justin Sconza on new track, ‘Upside Down World’

 Opening his 3rd studio album, ‘Parlor’, is the latest single from Chicago-based Justin Sconza, ‘Upside Down World’.

Sconza’s previous albumsHome’ and ‘Maps’ were released in 2020 and 2022 respectively, and it appears that the multi-instrumentalist has channelled all of the confusing energy from those turbulent years into ‘Upside Down’. It really encompasses a shared journey that many listeners are likely to have experienced. It’s a track that is oozing with contemplation and reflection, yet delivered in a comforting and lighthearted manner. 

The repeated hook “the world is turning upside down” makes the track easy to get lost in, pondering on this idea. Is this a reaction to the ongoing crisis’ we’re globally, internationally, facing? Is it a reaction to an inner conflict? Perhaps it’s both, or perhaps it’s about something completely unexplored that only Sconza is aware of within himself.  

However, for such a heavy topic, the track is surprisingly breezy and relaxed. The tempo is slow, and Sconza’s layered vocal harmonies are exceptionally smooth and comforting. Production-wise, everything effortlessly has its place, with the acoustic guitar, marimba and electric guitar inflections supporting Sconza’s transient thoughts “looking up at the ceiling not really feeling”, “feeling like a tidal wave crashing / like an earthquake giving in to it”.

No matter the interpretation, there’s no denying it is almost meditative in nature. It definitely wouldn’t sound out of place playing in a coffee shop, or perhaps a Sunday-morning playlist - it possesses that same ease and mellow energy. 

Rachel Feehan

@rachel_feehan @rachiefee

Image: ‘Parlor’ Official Album Cover

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