The ever-evolving indie rock landscape frequently sees new additions, and today, we’re shifting our focus towards the Seattle-based Byland, an project curated by Alie Renee Byland. With the echoes of her 2020 album “Gray” still in the air, Byland is back with a fresh chapter titled “Monstera.” Before the song steps into the spotlight with its official release tomorrow, we here are brining you a first listen. You can pre-save the track at this link.
“Monstera” is more than just a song; it’s a story. It speaks of Alie’s transition between two cities, two lives, and a bond with a dear friend and former band-mate. This isn’t a simple story of relocation; it delves deep into the nuances of promises, perceptions, and the challenges of leaving behind a shared dream. As Alie paints it, her move wasn’t just about a new zip code; it echoed deeper sentiments, akin to the impermanence of a bird in migration or the fleeting presence of Saturn.
Many songs weave different emotions, experiences, and connections that might often remain hidden to the casual ear. Byland’s “Monstera” embodies this depth. With open-hearted transparency, Alie Renee Byland offers a glimpse into the song’s roots and the deep-seated ties from her past that influenced it.
The song is about moving away from my hometown of Albuquerque and one of the most painful “goodbyes.” The lyrics are dedicated to someone I love and believe in. It isn’t quite a love letter, and it is not an apology. I’ve known Kristian since I was a kid. She is the first person I ever made music with. We promised each other we were going to grow up, make music, and go on tour together.
After moving back to Albuquerque in 2020 and having Kristian drum in my band, it felt like a decades-long dream that was finally coming true. So, my decision to move away two years later wasn’t just about changing my address – I was breaking a promise. I was the migratory bird that couldn’t stay. I was the Saturn that returned and then went away.
I remember the day, shortly after I told her about my plans to move, the two of us sat at the small piano bench in my Albuquerque home and just wept together. The gravity of the decision and what it meant for our childhood dream was just so heavy. She was sad, angry, and heartbroken, and I caused her that pain. I knew I was doing what was best for me, but it really sucks when what is best for you hurts other people that you love. Kristian will always be a significant part of who I am as a person and a musician, and this song is a part of our story.
Upon first listen, there’s an immediate recognition of the indie rock essence, harmoniously fused with a hint of grunge brought to life through atmospheric guitar riffs. Alie Renee Byland’s voice, both mellifluous and powerful, emerges as the radiant anchor, casting a glow over the intricate nuances of “Monstera”.
The sheer emotionality of the track is undeniable. It doesn’t just play; it resonates, making you every chord and every word. There’s a certain ethereal quality to the song, almost as if it’s crafted from fragments of dreams and fleeting moments.
But what stands out most prominently is Alie’s vocal performance. It’s genuine, powerful, and beautifully vulnerable. The dreamlike state that “Monstera” induces is both comforting and evocative. Truly, it’s a piece that showcases Byland’s artistic depth and the genuine heart she pours into her work.
The musical celebration doesn’t end with just the song. Alie is retracing her steps, quite literally, with the “Monstera” tour. Set to commence today, on September 21st, this journey will encapsulate her travels from the Southwest to the Northwest.
The tour will trace a scenic route from the southern tip of Texas, winding its way through New Mexico, Arizona, California, and culminating in the Pacific Northwest of Oregon and Washington.
Below are the dates and venues for the “Monstera” tour:
9/21: SoFar Sounds – El Paso, TX
9/22: The Elephant Ranch – Las Cruces, NM
9/23: The Kimo Theater – Albuquerque, NM
9/24: Groundworks – Tucson, AZ
9/25: Hotel Cafe – Los Angeles, CA
9/27: Sam Bond’s Garage – Eugene, OR
9/28: Local 31 Pub – Ashland, OR
9/29: The Fixin’ To – Portland, OR
9/30: Black Lab – Everett, WA
Whether you’re in the sunny expanse of California or the lush locales of Oregon, don’t miss the chance to witness Byland’s music live, and firsthand.
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