There is always beauty in the ruins and nothing is random. – Tailor, Trust Part 1
When the word “chameleon” is used in the music industry, names like Madonna, David Bowie and Freddie Mercury pop up. These artists constantly evolve – not only in terms of appearance, but most importantly also music wise. They invite their fans along on their personal journeys of discovery and therefore also make their music listeners feel welcome and connected. Unfortunately there aren’t many SA acts brave enough to step out of the comfort of the mould. I guess when a winning formula is first achieved it takes guts to venture out into the unknown in search on new possibilities.
With her two previous studio releases, Tailor has proven that she has mastered both the brooding folksy dark pop genre (Dark Horse released in 2012), as well as the upbeat, commercial indie pop genre (Light released in 2014). The release of Trust Part 1 suggests that Tailor is on a new path of discovery. The first single, “1000 Miles” sees her experimenting in a fusion of alternative rock and melancholic pop. Lyrically it’s gloomy, yet hopeful; nostalgic, yet optimistic. It seems like Tailor has found the perfect balance between her dark and light side.
Tailor has never been afraid of sharing personal stories through her songs and this time is no different. She gives listeners a peek into her mind and emotional state and where some artists shy away from direct issues and topics, Tailor tackles them head first. The songs consist of many creative metaphors, which will keep the listener intrigued and questioning. Themes like longing, betrayal and reminisce overpowers the thematic spectrum on Trust Part 1. The songs suggest that Tailor has been through heartache and personal turmoil and perhaps this EP is as much for herself as it is for her audience. She wears her heart on her sleeve and that is certainly worth applauding.
Tailor’s vocals are as chill-inducing as ever and she experiments with even more new vocal tones this time around. From the rich, dark tones found on “Trust” to the more playful tones found on “For You”, it seems like there is very little Tailor can’t do vocally. The production of the album also deserves accolades. And it seems a lot of it had to do with trusting, which also led to the album’s title. Recently, she accompanied Live’s frontman, Ed Kowalcyzk, on his last tour of South Africa. Zak Loy, who plays guitar on Kowalcyzk’s solo shows, and Tailor hit it off and Loy ended up producing the eight-track Trust Part 1 EP, which was recorded in Austin, Texas.
Tailor has become known for not only experimenting with vocal sounds, but also on the overall production of her songs. A different atmosphere is brought to life on every song by means of interesting instruments and production choices. For example, Tailor brought in a drummer who uses actual chains to create a very specific ambiance for the song “Avalanche”. Also listen out for beautiful strings on “I’ll be Yours” and “26” and the subtle organ on “Run”. This makes for a very diverse listening experience, which will keep you drawn in throughout.
The album includes an interlude about choosing to swim rather than sink, and suggests that listeners can eagerly anticipate a Trust Part 2 on the way in the nearby future. I can’t wait!