Color Collage couldn’t think of a better time to release this upbeat track, “What a Time to Be Alive”. Winter may be one of my more fonder seasons, but there’s nothing like spring. You pull the sheet off. You dust off the skateboard. It’s nice to get drunk and fall onto asphalt every once in a while. On first listen, “What a Time to Be Alive” is reminiscent of scraped knees, glass bottles, warm air, and warmer breezes. Rocky shores and rickety docks. It has a summer vibe but it doesn’t overdo it. It feels like those moments where the sun doesn’t beat down on you. It’s just the energy and the freedom of being able to breathe without a struggle. I like it. A lot.
If you know anything about my reviews, two things’ll soon become clear.
1) Seattle is where music comes from
2) The bassline is everything.
The bassline in this song…well, I can wave with it. It hits every spot it’s supposed to. I feel myself snapping to it when I didn’t even know what chord would come next. It’s not predictable, but it’s familiar. The song itself reminds me of days I would spend just listening to music and nothing else. The white noise in the song is expertly placed, in the moments where some instruments die back to let them live once again seconds later. Suffice to say, I really enjoy these guys.
However, despite the upbeat happenings of this song, the lyrics present a much different tale. Color Collage themselves describe the track as “a song about death and technology”, and we get a lot of that in the words rather than the music. “Hallelujah, Hallelujah/What a time to be alive/Hallelujah, Hallelujah/What a time to die,” is just one example of the almost “hidden” morbid themes of the song. I’m reluctant to say hidden because Color Collage knows what they’re trying to tell in this piece, but when the vocals don’t jive with the overall beat, I’d say that can cause a disconnect. But the message itself is clear, and sometimes juxtapositions help a lot more to accentuate the side you want to be noticed than just presenting it straight forward.
Color Collage describes themselves as the following; “Color Collage is an eclectic 6-piece indie pop band that marries vintage and modern sounds together. Originally a solo project, bandleader Shane Conerty has cooked up a tight band to help perform his ever-evolving brand of witty, socially conscious, and dark allegories that are delivered via shiny indie-pop that will get stuck in your head after one listen. “ I have to admit, the song itself definitely lets me see that bandleader’s mind at work. I’m interested in seeing what else these guys have up their sleeves. If “What a Time to Be Alive” is anything to go by, I’d keep them on your radar.
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