We recently had the pleasure of getting to know the insanely innovative and undeniably refreshing country-rockers Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze.
These on-the-rise, North Carolina-based country artists have been steadily gaining notoriety and acclaim since the release of their debut Single entitled “Don’t Quit Your Day Job”. Now, the band has released their highly anticipated follow up entitled “Just a Matter of Time” to mass critical acclaim and universal praise from music-lovers of all genres. The band is relatively new to the scene, with guitarist/percussionist Tom Foley and pianist/keyboardist Ralph Merigliano forming the band in 2016. From there, the band has grown into a remarkable 10-piece act, with each member adding a unique, yet necessary flavor to their musical country stew. The band’s vocal talents are handled by Hal Stroud, Amanda Cross, Melissa Race, and Matt Newton. The band’s lively instrumental sections are handled by founders Tom Foley & Ralph Merigliano (guitars, percussion, piano, and keyboards), Adam McOwen on the fiddle and mandolin, Greg Holt on the fiddle, Nelson McPherson on the bass, and Paul SantaCroce on the drums. Each member brings something special to the table from their differing musical backgrounds, and although each member comes from different places in the US, they have effectively united under the Carolina Creek banner with the simple mission statement of “delivering good music to music lovers— from music lovers”. For now, the band has settled in New York City and largely operate from there.
With independent recording continually growing more affordable and accessible than it ever has been; the industry is quickly becoming over-saturated with hobbyists and fame-seekers. Due to this, it is becoming ever-harder to be noticed within the endless sea of independent noise. The number of new artists entering the industry every day is growing exponentially. With this increase in industry competition, you’d think there would be a “standard” for things you shouldn’t do if you’re trying to become noticed and successful. Unfortunately, this is not the case…in fact, it seems that a vast majority of new artists have taken the lazy route —- copy those whom are more successful than you. You would think that this competitive environment would inspire some artists to go against the grain and carve out their own identity, but this is too often not the case.
Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze are an incredible exception to this rule and are quickly emerging as a country-infused sensation.
Listen to their immersive debut Single “Don’t Quit Your Day Job”:
The band’s approach to the country genre is refreshing, fun, and fascinating, while their music remains curiously relatable and hard hitting. Highly inspired vocals shine through dynamic guitar-work, impressive fiddle-playing, rich mandolin, stylistic piano, and a wildly groovy rhythm section. The seamless blending of each member’s distinctive and alluring style makes for a diverse and wonderfully unpredictable musical experience. While the band is no doubt rooted deeply in the classic country genre, their overall sound is an amazingly varied fusion of southern rock, country pop, and 60’s & 70’s country; all while adding an entirely unique self-defining twist.
This approach to music is especially refreshing in a world currently dominated by shallow Pop music. We, as listeners, are continuously exposed to these same formulaic, cookie-cutter, brand of artists. Although these types of artists have brilliantly perfected the ability to produce safe, catchy, and infectious music; they ultimately amount to being entirely forgettable, soon to be replaced by the next musical doppelgänger. This trend has infected almost every musical appendage and genre, whether it be commercially produced or independently released. The most unfortunate result of this trend is the stifling of musical ambition and the lack of innovation to set oneself apart in the industry. This is mostly due to an unapologetic desire by most new-coming artists to shamelessly reach into existing successful markets, void of any integrity, and follow an incredibly safe musical formula of commercially appealing and catchy copy of a copy Singles.
While this approach may work well if your goal as an artist is to make fast cash, albeit becoming forgettable, it certainly isn’t the winning formula for industry longevity and lasting notoriety.
Luckily, Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze are fiercely rebelling against this trend, carving out their own distinct musical identity, and restoring the faith of music lovers everywhere.
The band is quickly proving that with their addictive, unique, and highly engaging tunes; music, as an artistic medium, can transcend the label of “commodity”, and become something much deeper, more intimate, and immersive. On the surface, each track feels as if it were crafted by country music veterans— for country music veterans, easily appealing to dedicated fans of the genre. As you dig a little deeper, there is an almost undefinable quality to each track that oozes appeal far outside of the boundaries of the country genre. This is probably the band’s greatest asset. Their remarkable versatility and indisputable chemistry appeals to the music lover in all of us. Unlike many artists within the genre, the band haven’t limited their appeal to just country music fans. Their differing backgrounds have blended almost perfectly to deliver a final product that exudes integrity, life, and energy. There is definitely something for everybody within their growing catalog.
Much like its predecessor, the audio production exhibited in the freshly released Single “Just a Matter of Time“ is nothing short of spectacular. This is especially noteworthy considering the music itself is ferociously dynamic and unrestrained. Each instrumental track is uniquely stunning, with each complex sonic layer given space to breath and evolve. The track is fantastically sequenced in a way that maintains the listener’s interest, and contains minor mixing and instrumental intricacies that are both unique and add undeniable character to the track. Carolina Creek consistently surprise and impress with their enormous vocal prowess and the band collectively display a strong command of infectious vocal melodies and lush harmonies. With the powerful and effective backing of guitar, mandolin, fiddle, bass, and driving percussion; the band proves that their vocal prowess is simply one example of their many strong assets. The vocal performance is authentic and invokes a strong emotional response with their thoughtful and emotive lyrics.
Check out their newest hit “Just a Matter of Time”:
Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze are a remarkable act and an amazing breath of fresh air within an industry that has become overly saturated with copycat artists whose sole goal is to cash in on an increasingly uninventive formula. We can definitely see this band continuing their rise and becoming a household name, all while inspiring a new generation of independent artists. Not only do they have the impressive ability to craft infectious vocal hooks and melodies with outstanding pop-sensibility, but they does so with a remarkably unique blending of genres and evident care for messaging and content. Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze are a MUST LISTEN! Stay tuned as the band wraps up filming the video for their third Single “Momma”.
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