Mel Stirling is emerging as an electrifying solo act. Based in Los Angeles, the Australian artist previously performed in various alternative bands and supported well-known Australian acts such as The Radiators, Killing Heidi, Grinspoon and The Butterfly Effect. Mel Stirling’s striking voice and haunting singer-songwriter style produce a sound that is captivating. Off her first solo EP, Standing to Fall, the song "Kamikaze" showcases her all-encompassing performance style.
A few hits on the drum introduce the first verse of "Kamikze." Crisp electric guitar arpeggios follow with a pronounced treble sonority that rings through the mix. Joining Mel are musicians uke Zahnleiter (lead guitar), Michael Whitney (bass), and Scotty Wade (drums).
Mel's vocal entrance is reflective and tender as she sings, "Stay with me yeah / Stay with me yeah/ I can't see you're, blinding me yeah". You can hear a deep longing in her voice, a longing to be free from the emotional chains of a relationship that is suffocating. At the end of each phrase, the words blinding, bounding, and drowning make a big impact.
The chorus is built up by additional textures on piano and guitars. Fuzzy chords dominate. Mel's versatile voice shifts to an edgier, heavy metal sound. This section was written by Australian artist Lecia Louise. Here the music churns out a thick wall of sound as Mel shifts from a tender longing to frustration.
"How can we break these walls between us? And maybe see the light again How can we break these walls between us? And make it alright,"
Moving forward, the intensity continues with a surprising bridge section that feels dreamlike as the sound turns psychedelic with ghostly vocals, harmonic dissonance, and ambiance. "Kamikaze in your sleep. Kamikaze in your dreams."The song ends with a deep dive into an emotional kamikaze state with passionate vocal glides that sound improvisational.
Mel Stirling triumphs in "Kamikaze" with a larger than life vocal performance that knows no boundaries and a song that breaks the walls between music and emotion.