Music Review: Ever Present Past by Carnival Kid

Ever Present Past is the second EP from Carnival Kid, a solo project from German singer-songwriter Christian Stezycki. The project came about after Christian’s son was born on  11th of November 2009, at 9 past 11 A.M. The significance of this being that Children born on this day are called ‘Faschingskinder’ which translates as ‘carnival kids’. As this was a huge event in his life and changed everything he thought it was the perfect name for a solo project. Something I definitely agree with. 

In 2019 Carnival Kid’s debut EP All The Easy Places was released and since then he has also released several singles. 

Opening the EP is The Remains (featuring A Little Nothing and Jovernanté). Giving off a slight 90s pop-punk type of vibe the track opens the EP with a great jolt of energy. 

Bright twangy guitars and a bouncy bassline adorn the track. Joined by light crashing drums The Remains is not only a track you want to get up and really move around to, but it also has a softer side.  

Christians vocals have a warmth to them which makes the track inviting and also seem familiar. Almost like you heard it 10 years ago and are revisiting it on a nostalgia trip. 

Next up is The Last Day which offers a subtle dark undertone. This undertone does not affect the instrumentation as much as it does Christians tone and the lyrics. Still offering the bright twangy sound that was heard in The Remains the guitars in this track are played with more of a cautious feeling.

The vocal melody draws you in with its smooth lines and takes you into its thrall with the repeated ‘Why Should We’ lyric. Each one has a different ending and each brings you deeper into the tracks hold. 

Crashing in before the end of the track, the instrumentation is played with an almost frenzy. Hiking up the energy of The Last Day, the track goes out with a bang. 

Coming in with a laidback vibe, Porcelain brings you into the second half of Ever Present Past

Although very laidback in nature the track has a funky edge to it which even if you don’t like downbeat tracks will make Porcelain unskippable. A chirpy snare drum punctuates each simple beat and gives the track a zap of vitality. 

In this track Christians vocals still have their warmth however now they are joined by a dreamy undertone. All of this together makes for a soundscape which you could easily find yourself floating away in. 

Straight after you are greeted by Complicated. Continuing with the laidback vibes Complicated offers a relaxed atmosphere that like the previous track Porcelain has enough energy to keep the EPs momentum. 

A driving melody is the main factor for this. Plucky guitars take centre stage in this track to guide the light instrumentation to its end. 

Huskier vocals accompany the light backing music to create a wonderful contrast. Christian performs the melody so effortlessly that the track glides smoothly into your ears and it’s over before you can realise.

Closing the EP is its namesake Ever Present Past. Displaying an emotional atmosphere, the track is made up of almost entirely acoustic guitars.

Letting go of all inhibitions, the raw emotional side of the EP really shines through on this track. Christian produces his most impassioned performance to date and his ability to tell a story through song is on full display. 

Ever Present Past is a wonderful second EP from Carnival Kid. Its twangy guitars and heartfelt vocal performance make it a release that can be enjoyed by all.

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