Colton Somavia is a nineteen-year-old musician who is just getting started on his solo career. HIs first release 3 Songs is a scattered, guitar centric, DIY lo-fi effort that showcases some talent but also is far from perfect. Somavia has an undefined style but John Frusciante did pop into my head a couple of times.
The EP starts with “1:03 AM” in which the music revolves around a rhythm and lead guitar and drums. It’s a chill, relaxing vibe and that's really about it. There is one major change in the song around the two-and-a-half minute mark. What the song lacks is a focal center to keep your attention. It’s pleasant and easy on the ears but that's really about it. Lead vocals would have helped or a technical and creative lead to keeping the music from feeling like something that resides in the background.
The second song “DeMarco” contains a lot of the same strengths and weaknesses as the first song. Somavia draws out passages too long at times and you are left grasping for elements that really drive the song. The lead guitar work is vying for the limelight but really struggles.
There is a time and place to use samples. Rule number one is don’t throw in samples if they aren’t elevating the song in some way. A prime example of samples being used well is The Avalanches. The samples they use are relevant to the song in some way. Somavia throws in samples from the movie Pulp Fiction and it feels disparate from the music. He states that he just really likes Quentin Tarantino movies. The problem arises because nothing else in the song relates to the samples. He isn't tying in themes or his own lyrics - He is just throwing samples over a pretty cool rocking riff.
Somavia has some technical and creative skill but will need to increase his game if he is hoping to compete against grade A talent. I’m sure he probably knows that but his first concern should be finding a way to keep the songs from feeling like they need a lead element.
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