If you are a millennial, your teenage years were probably spent listening to rap music on your headphones. Or, maybe you were into the whole pop-punk movement or even the nu-metal craze.
Music identifies who we are and is a means to being accepted, nurturing a sense of belonging and a method of self-expression.
But if you’re someone who doesn’t see the lines between music genres and thinks of music as part of your individuality, allowing yourself to be a free thinker, then you are way ahead of the curve (you trailblazer you).
An artist who fully embraces this music philosophy is Ecca Vandal. Hailing from Melbourne, Ecca is making strident steps in the music industry. Rather than fitting into any boxes, she is creating her own lane as an artist; open-minded and incredibly passionate about the music she makes.
A few weeks ago it was announced that Ecca was going on a national tour to support her debut album, finally getting a release on 20 October via Dew Process. This self-titled record showcases her artistry to full effect and her need to express herself with different musical colours and styles.
The first half of the album is all about Ecca validating her rock credentials, and she does this with tenacity.
Compositions such as Your Way; Broke Days, Party Nights; Price Of Living and Closing Ceremony will satisfy music fans who love to mosh pit or just like their music with a lot of balls and attitude.
Price Of Living addresses the cruel treatment of refugees stuck in detention centres, and features Dennis Lyxzen from Swedish hardcore punk outfit Refused, and Jason Aalon Butler from Los Angeles alternative rock band Letlive, both screaming out their lungs in the chorus along with Ecca’s manic vocals. For a debut album, she’s already bringing some high profile guests and it already shows that her music has the power to attract the influential friends she makes along in her travels.
Future Heroine is a composition that stands out immediately with its infectious industrial beat and pop sensibility; it’s the official single of the album and deals with relationship anxieties as Ecca declares on the chorus: “Woah / Slow down / I won’t be your future fairy tale.”
The second half of the album brings out Ecca’s hip hop, soul and electronic influences, on compositions such as Cassettes, Lies & Videotapes, a dirty dancehall affair with an incredible groove, the music commanding you to get down and shake. Your Orbit is a tribute to the classic golden era of hip hop and features prodigy MC Sampa The Great. This collaboration is the pinnacle of two female artists who are on the top of their game and have earned true respect from music fans and critics.
Other stand out tracks are Dead Wait , a song about ending a relationship and cutting ties featuring production from Sydney DJ Moonbase, and Cold Of The World is a love song with a melancholic synth melody that sounds like a Radiohead composition. The album ends with Bad Habit returning to the rock edginess where the album started thus going full circle.
This is a debut album offering a 21st-century outlook on music and reflects an age when listeners are exposed to more music than ever before. Ecca Vandal has realised this and is using it to her strength. It is music without limits, and makes a lot of its contemporaries sound boring and safe.
I’m sure this is just the start of her unfolding musical journey, come what may she’s already brought to the table an album that simply can’t be ignored; it’s a car bomb exploding into the commercially-saturated and disposable modern day music scene.
Released: 20 October, 2017 via Dew Process