by Alexandra Hall
12 songs. 12:00 am. October 12. The “Frankenstein album”.
Stitched together from start to finish, Connor Kelly’s debut album “Informal Conversations” is out now.
Kelly describes his album in a long phone call, while strumming his guitar gently in the background.
He says, “[Informal Conversations] is like a Swiss Army Knife. You can do a lot with it. There’s something for everyone because we really tried expanding the sound to fit a wider audience.”
‘We’ being the dedicated team of his brother Benjamin Kelly and his producer, Travis Wyrick. In a series of songs created from bedrooms and produced in Lakeside Studios in Knoxville, Tennessee, Kelly debuts not only his new music, but also sets a foundation for his future career to be built upon. “Informal Conversations” is not just an album. It is a statement of youth. It is a time capsule of passion.
Kelly has worked on Informal Conversations after his hit song “Things To Lose” came out roughly a year ago. His first brush with fame has forced Kelly to top his past releases and prove that he is more than just a one hit wonder. In fact, “Informal Conversations” is a beautifully constructed cluster of individual songs that unite to form a perfect compilation of Kelly’s diverse and flexible sound.
Similar to John Mayer’s methodic, paced voice, Kelly takes that consistency and adds his own twist to each song he produces. Each song is a new experience, not just an passive listening session that actively makes the listener think of situations in his life when those songs might apply. It is not a concept album, but it is clearly conceptual.
The effort put into this album is hidden behind the closed doors, or rather etched into the lyric booklet and back of the album itself, as Kelly hand wrote his song titles, lyrics, and cover to gain a more personal grip on his art. It communicates a strong sense of authenticity between the listener and the artist, one that in Kelly’s mind is blurred by a standardized font.
The violet, magenta blur behind the Viewmaster displayed on the cover of “Informal Conversations” is a perfect representation of the album in its entirety. Each picture is a glimpse of the bigger picture. It is personal. Vibrant. Therapeutic. Kelly stuns his audience and reaches out to even more listeners because of who he is as an artist and a person. Both of which are incredibly creative and down to Earth.
“Informal Conversations” will strike the souls of any listeners who tune in. So Rocka readers, grab your headphones. You’re in for it this time.
Until next time, Rocka out.