Conan Gray’s debut album ‘Kid Krow’ is the definitive introduction that artists dream of having. The bold and cohesive collection of tracks sets the foundations for the Californian singer-songwriter to have an honest career that paves the way for other artists to be authentically themselves.
Detailing all of his anxieties and deepest emotions, this coming of age affair opens with the loneliness of ‘Comfort Crowd’ as he explores moving to the big city and not having any of his friends around to keep him calm. It’s a song that feels comfortable and warm within it’s foundations and is the perfect introduction to the explorative layers of the rest of the album.
‘Wish You Were Sober’ is the anthem that you wish you could blast in front of anyone that has only told you they liked you while blackout drunk and won’t admit their feelings sober. It’s something that a lot of people can relate to, and it’s just a giant mood.
Sonically it follows behind ‘Maniac’ with it’s big bold synth-pop layering, and it’s just a lot of fun with how they’ve produced it. it also has a very similar energy and feel behind it with early single ‘Checkmate’.
The moody ‘The Cut That Always Bleed’ hears him crooning in a soothing manner while ‘Fight Or Fight’ delivers that angsty theatrical Panic At The Disco touch and then ‘Affluenza’ sits in that Billie Eilish realm.
But the albums real highlight comes during the heartbreakingly beautiful ‘Heather’. This dreamy and hyper-emotional track is one that will touch the heart of every queer kid who has loved one of their friends who was in love with a girl that had a name like “Heather”. It didn’t matter how nice they were, because you just hated them more than anything. And that’s the candidness that this song explores.
“Why would you ever kiss me? I’m not even half as pretty. You gave her your sweater, it’s just polyester. But you like her better. Wish I were Heather” he soothingly sings during the dreamy hook.
It’s a minimally produced song, but it’s the heartfelt emotion that drives the impact it creates along with the beautiful storytelling.
The only criticism that one could have with this record is that it’s too short. But in hindsight that’s the best sort of criticism you could get as you have people genuinely wanting to hear more already, and that immediately builds the anticipation for the next chapter.
From start to finish ‘Kid Krow’ is an engaging listen that hears him opening up his heart and allowing you to experience his vulnerability in a pure and genuine way. It also hears him cementing himself as the biggest newcomer of 2020, and that’s a certified fact.
Conan Gray Australian Tour
Wednesday 23 September – Fortitude Music Hall, Brisbane
Thursday 24 September – Forum, Melbourne *SOLD OUT*
Saturday 26 September – Big Top Luna Park, Sydney
Full tour details: https://www.secretsounds.com/tours/conan-gray-tickets-2020/