It’s a sad state of affairs, but the reality is that the bulk of musicians that control the realm of pop music frequently don’t show a lot of care or appreciation for the actual instrumentation of the music that they record, produce and subsequently make a lifestyle on. Izzy Escobar proves that she’s not going to take the easy route when it comes to making her music and her brand a household name in her debut single “Broken Wings,” and she’s not alone. In the last year and a half, I’ve been seeing a new trend in pop that hasn’t happened since the early 90’s. Artists are refusing to blend in with the crowd, and labels are again becoming irrelevant, except this time we’re seeing the explosion of an alternative to alternative music itself. This trend isn’t marked by an associated advertising campaign or a feature film that is spurring on this new wave in pop culture. Its artist powered and fiercely independent, and I would even say that in many aspects, Escobar is slowly becoming both the face and the leader of this exciting movement.
“Broken Wings” is a song built on music that is full of texture and fortitude. There is no annoying middle-overdrive or scooped guitars to create the illusion of crashing waves or quaking amplified riffs. There aren’t any processed vocals harmonizing with other, equally processed and compressed vocals to lend to some sort of artificial acapella. There are just the rich, organically generated textures of her vocals meshing with the synthesized grooves, and their vibrancy and animation is allowed to run free, relentlessly reminding us of how alive and full of energy it really is. Izzy Escobar understands that the harmony of pop music, when it’s made from a place of artistry and honesty instead of greed, is rooted in the simplicity of its construction and not the design of its album cover. Even the music video for “Broken Wings” refuses to overindulge in its delivery of this shimmering pop song, even when every opportunity presents itself.
The maturity of her restraint is impressive considering her little experience in the recording business to date, and it also gives me the idea that she isn’t going to have a difficult time navigating her career as more and more attention surrounds her work (which honestly, it inevitably will). “Broken Wings” is a fine introduction to the artist that Izzy Escobar is, and serves as an even more exquisite example of what modern indie pop can accomplish when it comes from as focused and passionate place as this has. Much like some of the greatest singers and songwriters of all time, she has all of the charisma and charm that is required to get draw in a crowd both on a stage and in a record store, but she’s also got the skillset to keep the audience’s attention from the jump all the way to the finish line. On the strength of this initial offering, one can only wonder how intriguing her first full-length album will be.
Thomas Patton, III