Adolescent angst seems to be the pinpoint of teenage attention. Skaters stroll about the nearest parks, collectivizing against the common tides of the system. Savant-computer hackers commit themselves to their bedrooms, grueling away on their MMO games for hours on end, perhaps to escape the ridicule of their high-testosteroned schoolmates. It seems that kids need something that relates to their outcast personality. As long as teenage anger exists, so will the music industry’s attempt in understanding their rage.
Musicians such as Nicholas Kerr, also known as guardin, are complementing the phase with their expressions of grief, first love, and isolation. Expressions don’t need to be lasting, only potent. By the time we reach our mid-twenties or beyond, we will realize the benign nature of issues that we once condoled as end-of-the-world scenarios.
“So, I’ll run so far from these shadows. Makeshift but my heart’s too fragile,”
As for Kerr, the young musician is keeping up with this expression well, especially with his latest single entitled solitary.” Kerr is a young musician from New York who has a knack for catching up to modern trends. His YouTube channel consists of low-gradient Anime filters that fit the depressive atmosphere of his music. Typically, his music will blend Lo-Fi Hip-Hop with subtly caressing guitar strings and vocals that subdue the sadness even further. “solitary” demonstrates that well.
For this single, I think Kerr wanted to focus more on the core of the aesthetic. Guitar strings that have just the right slow tempo to match Kerr’s elongated enunciation. Kerr is also beyond-his-years when it comes to his writing style. When Kerr articulates such phrases as “So, I’ll run so far from these shadows. Makeshift but my heart’s too fragile,” his attempt is targeted at the emotionally paralleled youth of the humble suburban, twenty-first century.
Kerr holds just the right intonation to perfectly match the youthful, aching voice of the Emo era before 2010. His vocal range can be familiarized with the likes of Thomas Mars of the band Phoenix. This perfect intonation is the range that suburban kids recognize, whether they’d like to admit it or not.
He’ll also compliment the vocals with chiming guitar strings and a familiar MPC drum pattern. Regardless of whether the outsiders will see this song as sappy or overtly emasculated, it’s not meant for them. Kerr injects the right amount of slow grief into his music so that those going through the phase right now will find their escaping niche.
Kerr knows what’s he’s doing, and in a vigorous and relentless industry battle royale, he will have to take these routes to project his image from the herd and become the recognizable image he desires.