The Calazzus Project drop EP
A fearless beat strikes down like lightning in a cloudy sky. We’re getting caught up in the moment – swept up in our emotions and deepest desires. It becomes irresistible, like a dangerously addictive drug. Singer Liz Anne Hill pleads, “Bring me a higher ground, so I don’t get swept up in your love,” as if to transport us to the rapid, category five hurricane of lust and rhythm that has consumed her. This is only a glimpse into the pulsating opening track “Higher Ground” from musical wizard Calazzus’ new extended play, The Calazzus Project II, which flows steadily from song to song like an operatic pop masterpiece.
Liz Anne Hill and her golden pipes stick around for the second track, “Right Place Right Time,” as well, and the result actually makes for quite the interesting illustration of Calazzus’ versatility as a composer and producer. In contrast to “Higher Ground,” “Right Place Right Time” is definitively a rock song, led by gripping, distorted riffage and anthemic vocals from Hill that could just as easily have found their place on a straight forward power pop/punk album. There’s an eclectic, bluesy harmonica that finds its way into the chorus and trays us into smart, irreverent alternative rock territory. It’s not exactly what you’re expecting following the island tropics and R&B swing of the previous track, but it manages to make the transition effortlessly without any hiccups.
“I’m So Into Ya” takes us back into the polished glow of the first track, this time under the command of the stunning Christina R’s cutting prose. There’s an opulence in this song that is infectiously attractive and unmistakable when Christina starts to sing, and her voice serves as the perfect complement to Calazzus’ funky, catchy hooks. This is definitely a song that could climb the Billboard Hot 100 if it’s released as a single. “Asking For” the fourth song on The Calazzus Project II, could also stand on its own as a single. Aptly carried by the sensitive crooning of singer/songwriter Shauna Cardwell, “Asking For” opens with a space age synthesizer sparkle that is reminiscent of early Ellie Goulding, and as the momentum of the first stanza builds and our anticipation reaches a fever pitch, Cardwell hoists us into the universe above to dance alongside the stars that inhabit it. It’s an electronically-structured song that sometimes borders on shoegazey and yet somehow manages to feel minimal and simplistic. Thought provoking and extraordinarily entertaining all at the same time.
The EP rounds out with a scorching melodic hip-hop track in “Movies,” featuring the slick stylings of Thir13teen and the haunting 80’s club revival song “You,” which takes us full circle, back to the fierce winds of swagger that got us started in “Higher Ground.” On The Calazzus Project II, Calazzus has offered us an audiological smorgasbord of tones, beats and harmonies to introduce us to his artistry that is nothing short of breathtaking in its variety and tightness. And after all, if truly great pop music isn’t the pinnacle of eclecticism, then what on earth is?