Song Review: Escape Artist Lovers – “Follow The Leader”

Escape Artist Lovers, a Californian rock duo comprising Rain Phoenix and Kirk Hellie, dives into a sea of introspection with their latest single, “Follow The Leader.” The track, a blend of shimmering guitar riffs and serene harmonies, offers a profound contrast with its contemplative lyrics. It’s a song that oscillates between a mellifluous soundscape and a deeply reflective narrative, perfectly encapsulated in the duo’s black and white music video directed by Geoff Ryan.

At its core, “Follow The Leader” questions the dynamics of leadership and conformity. The song’s lyrical journey is one of self-examination and the universal quest for truth. “Watch them fall, we watch them follow the leader,” the duo sings, probing the human tendency to blindly follow, losing oneself in the process. This sentiment is amplified by the visual representation in the video, where animated, faceless figures march in sync, symbolizing a loss of individuality.

Musically, the track is steeped in a nostalgic recall of various rock epochs – a nod to the ‘70s Laurel Canyon, ‘80s Paisley Underground, and ‘90s alternative rock. Yet, it never feels like a mere echo of the past. Instead, Phoenix and Hellie bring a freshness to this rich sonic heritage, creating something that feels both familiar and novel. The mellowed harmonies, coupled with sparkling guitar riffs, create an almost ethereal atmosphere, allowing the song to float in its own unique space.

Lyrically, the song’s strength lies in its simplicity and the universality of its message. The lines “All of the hearts are breaking from all of the loss” resonate deeply, reflecting a collective sense of despair and longing in today’s world. The song does not just stop at questioning; it invites listeners to reflect on their own positions in the societal hierarchy of leaders and followers.

“Follow The Leader” is more than just a musical piece; it’s a commentary on our times, wrapped in a captivating melody. It’s a reflection on our collective journey, our losses, and the truths we seek. This track, alongside their upcoming shows supporting The Bobby Lees, positions Escape Artist Lovers not just as musicians but as storytellers of our contemporary world, resonating with those who find themselves at the crossroads of introspection and societal observation.

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