Melanie Marod | Stars Review
Vocalist Melanie Marod is releasing a collaboration with Chris Wiser called Stars. Marod is comfortable in many styles; she brings her warm-toned vocals into focus with Wiser’s rock and blues tones. The EP has a strong roots-rock meets blues overtone and was recorded at Downtown Recording Studios in NYC and was mixed and mastered by GRAMMY-nominated Tyler McDiarmid (Gregory Porter, Fred Hersch). The band is Chris Wiser (vocals, guitar), Art Hirahara (keyboard, organ), Sam Bevan (bass, guitar), Brian Fishler (drums), Jim Shaneberger (slide guitar), Mitch Marcus (flute, trombone, trumpet, saxophone), Joe Hettinga (engineer, piano), and Max Lockwood (cello).
“Stars” sets the tone with a dreamy melody. Being the first selection of the five, it is a perfect sound in defining the mood of the project, and part of the reason is Marod’s relaxed and sensual vocals, and the other part is the beautiful playing by the band. This solid overall track brings an infectious groove, accessible message, and catchy chorus together in under four minutes.
“Sorry Song” features a voluptuous R&B sensibility and Marod’s nuanced style, carrying the melody with Wiser. The two sing a fine vocal counterpoint that is easygoing and interesting in its texture. The band sounds terrific, and as more vocal layers, horns, and guitar fills balloon out the mix, the song builds nicely to the fade.
Stars is an EP for listeners the are old-school fans of a beautiful voice singing memorable melodies. Marod is an advocate for blending style with tasteful vocal performances, and with Wiser joining, the two have specific chemistry. Stars has a way of alternating pop, Americana, rock-n-roll, and blues in a way that feels new and mature while still totally capturing your attention.
April 19, 2022