Eddy Yang’s ‘A New City’ captures spirit of wonder with a unique rock feel
EP available for full release on April 5
Traveling to a new city can be both eye-opening and filled with wonder. There’s so much to take in, and it can hit you all at once. Where do you go to eat? Where’s the best place to meet people, what’s the touristy places that you’ll want to check out to get the full experience?
It’s not every day you find music created with that specific experience in mind, yet, that’s just what Eddy Yang does on his new EP “A New City.”
Recorded after traveling to New York City for the first time, Yang states that the album came about after, “…being inspired and wide-eyed while walking through NYC at night. A New City EP is about the feeling of being young and alive, when the world is still innocent and full of possibilities.”
The first single, which dropped on Feb. 28, captures that sense of wonder quite well. Yang, who wrote and performed all of the songs on his own, keeps the guitars layered and upbeat throughout the track and his positive attitude can be heard in his voice without any doubt as to what the mood is.
Hearing it the first time, I could picture myself standing on a New York rooftop singing the lyrics to nobody in particular as I take in the city as the sun sets. The guitar solo complements the track perfectly, and it sounds as authentic as you can get.
Yang, who is an Asian-American from Los Angeles, shows off his musical talents throughout the five-song EP. My favorite track is the 10 minute and 11 second song that you could consider the sister song to the lead single. Titled “In the City,” Yang accomplishes something that’s not easy with songs longer than 6 minutes.
He plays it in a way that doesn’t make it sound too long. He varies the instruments, the vocals and the tempo where by the time you’re 8 minutes in you’re surprised that it’s gone that long vs. wondering when it’ll finally end.
In addition to manning the acoustic and electric guitars, Yang also plays the sax and beat programming on the record. His sound is comparable to such artists as Chvrches, Sonic Youth, Kurt Vile and a young Bruce Springsteen.
If there’s any constructive criticism to write about, it’d be that he couldn’t go wrong with adding more variety to the chord progressions and instrumentals, although, his approach here is an interesting one. The vocals are passable, as well, even if on a few tracks the pitch is a little rough around the edges.
As someone who does it all, though, the advantage there is that he’s got full control over how to complement the vocals, and how to keep the pace moving with a mixture of instrumental elements.
The fact of the matter is, there aren’t that many Asian-American rock artists out there today, but, the question is, why not? Yang shows that he’s got the raw talent to hang with just about anyone in terms of pure musical ability. He also takes that relate-able feeling of discovering something new when you’re in a new city, and makes an album that represents that feeling as well as anything I’ve ever heard.