With the release of his newest EP, “bright side of the moon,” on August 9, singer Christian French reaffirmed his status as one of alt-pop’s greatest new talents.
Complete with six singles, the album exudes an infectious positivity that leaves listeners in a lighthearted mood.
Like many of today’s new artists, French started his musical career on Soundcloud, releasing music while he was still in high school. His breakthrough came when he released his first single, “Fall For You,” which charted on the United States Viral 50 Chart on Spotify.
Now, at 21 years old, French’s resume includes accomplishments such as touring with Chelsea Cutler on her “Sleeping With Roses Tour” and, more recently, opening for Quinn XCII on his tour “From Tour With Love.” “It still hasn’t really hit me yet and it’s really insane,” French said, concerning his touring experiences.
French’s creative process begins with improvising chords on the piano and then continues with him mouthing words that might go along with the tune. “Then I’ll go from there and kinda puzzle piece it together with a story in mind,” French stated. “I think that’s a really important part of my writing. Having a predetermined story.” His new EP was created under this same creative process. So, let’s dive into his new EP, song by song.
“bright side of the moon”
French begins his new EP with the most upbeat and thoroughly positive song of the whole album. The song is like one big pep talk: “Oh, it’s not so bad / Just look on the bright side / It’s the right time to come through / I’m learning to fall / in love with the twilight.” French doesn’t discount the fact that bad things happen in life, but he instead chooses to “shake off stupid thoughts.”
With the sound of heavy guitar strumming and an underlying heavy beat, the rhythm of the song will have listeners tapping their toes. Paired with French’s light and smooth vocals, “the bright side of the moon” is the perfect song for lifting one’s spirits.
The second song from the EP has a much slower beat, but it contains the same insuppressible energy. The lyrics frame a familiar story: boy meets girl, boy can’t stop thinking about girl, boy falls in love with girl. French perfectly captures the emotions felt when falling hopelessly in love. “You’ve got a hold of me / I’m diving in headfirst / hoping I could love you so recklessly.”
Just being near his significant other drives the narrator wild. “Feeding off adrenaline that’s speeding through my heart / You walk a little closer and I feel it coming on / I’m crazy for your energy that echoes anywhere I go.” The beat might be slow, but there’s a steady stream of sexual energy bubbling under its surface. The song is almost like velvet: smooth and rich.
Track No. 3, “hungover sunday,” is hands down the chillest song of the whole album, and extremely relatable. First off, Sundays are notoriously lazy days, but add a hangover and the laziness factor increases exponentially. “Cause I drank too much and I feel kinda funny / I can’t get up, girl, I’d rather do nothing with you,” French croons. One of French’s greatest influences is John Mayer, and this song blatantly reflect this fact with its soft tones that threaten to lull one to sleep.
The song is a celebration of the little moments in life, specifically just lying in bed and enjoying the company of a significant other: “And there’s not too much I planned today / so let’s stay in, we can get away, just us two.” French reminds his audience that sometimes the best getaway comes from staying right where you are and appreciating the moment.
“breaking all the rules”
French continues the carefree tone of the rest of his EP with “breaking all the rules,” but the song includes a twist. Now French is a self-appointed bad boy: “Never been one to drink at bars / I spend my days driving foreign cars / Stop believing it’s how it’s supposed to be / never been one to play that part.”
The song is sonically similar to “head first” and even though French emphasizes his new bad boy persona, he still includes his signature positivity. “Cause I don’t need no worries / I’ve been doing fine.”
“call me your love”
The most angsty of the tracks, “call me your love,” details the stress of a romantic relationship that has yet to be defined. “Just me and you / I’m watching the way that you move / What do I do,” the confused narrator cries.
The emotional lyrics match the moody tone of the music in a way that creates an overall brooding atmosphere. “And I’ve been hoping / we’ll take off, we’re floating / high off this emotion / Just call me your love tonight,” French sings as the beat drops.
The album has such a positive outlook, but “heavy snow” is a prominent outlier. The song has an appropriately frosty vibe. “Visions blurred, lost and on my own / I told myself I’d escape weeks ago / but here I am, in the same place / feeling cold.”
In direct contrast to “bright side of the moon,” “heavy snow” is downcast and overwhelmingly negative. “No, I can’t take it much longer / I fall away, too deep / and I’m too scared to see / it’s washing over me.” But the dreary lyrics are redeemed by the slow, steady and infectious beat. By ending the EP with this song, French proves that he is more than just a happy-go-lucky artist, but that he’s a versatile singer-songwriter.
French’s music exudes cool, calm and collected rhythms, but he still manages to weave in upbeat synth sounds. It’s obvious that French wants his music to bring joy to those who listen and impact people’s lives in a positive way. Christian French leaves listeners with a sweet taste in their mouth and a craving for more of his music.