Project Vela is a brand new musical venture comprising of Travis Owen from Colorado and Scott Spriggs from Kansas. There are only two at the moment, but they hint that this may change in the future. Springs met Owen while living in Colorado. They were in different bands that played a lot of shows together in the same scene in Denver. Springs moved to Kansas in 2013, and Owen kept working hard with his band in Colorado.
They kept in touch, and decided that they wanted to make music together. It was a natural progression, really; anyone could’ve seen that coming. They had musical skills that complemented one another, and they both had the same vision for a particular type of music they wanted to create. They’ve still yet to play live, but I hope that changes soon because they have a really interesting sound.
Their five-track debut EP entitled Disconnect opens with the track “Blame Me” and there are heavy Linkin Park vibes from the word go. They use their influence to make a fresh, exciting new sound. They’re not just on a nostalgia trip. An infectious piano arpeggio atop a fill-heavy beat leads the listener into the track, and it boasts non-stop energy from there on out. Emotive vocals croon atop the piano and synth-heavy verses, and explosive vocals sing atop explosive power chords during the verses. The breakdown towards the end is laden with fractured and angst-fueled screams, along with jolted, static electric guitar.
It’s a throwback to old-school nu metal with electronic flourishes, but vocally and instrumentally there are things which push it a little further than this. The wall of sound during the climax of the song merges synthetic and acoustic sounds together. A second climax (you’ll understand what I mean if you listen to the track) comprises of a tender piano-driven instrumental, faintly beating drums, and a lengthy vocal sample talking about radiation and nuclear events. I like the way this whole thing comes together.
“War On Falling Stars” is driven by a glitchy electronic beat, faintly-throbbing synth strings, and guttural electric power chords. All of these combine to create an aggressive vibe that perfectly summarizes the teenage experience. “I think I’ve already lost you to the war on falling stars,” the vocalist sings. It’s a strange combination of the intimate human experience and futuristic space-fueled imagery, but it somehow works. It evokes a powerful image in the mind, and that’s probably due to the catchy and infectious melody. All the sounds just come together. The combination of guitar and synths is perfectly and precisely planned.
“Dirt On Your Grave” is driven by a synthetic arpeggio and vocals. It’s a space ballad, and that’s the best way I can think to describe it. There are bursts of string harmonies and piano which blend into the numerous dense layers of this song. It’s hard to put into words why this song evokes so many emotions until you’ve listened to it for yourself. The climax, in particular, is very special. The strings become a little more powerful and frantic, the vocals layer on top of one another, and the drums beat a little more ferociously.
All in all, this is a solid EP. The rock scene has been suffering a bit during recent years, and it’s about time a band came along to fill a void in this genre. I really think you should give Project Vela a listen because they have old school influences with a dose of something new and exciting.
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