As the days get longer and the morning's just a little bit warmer, our urge to feel summer again is rapidly approaching. Moments of boot stompin’ and knee slappin’ are coaxing the sun to stay out just a bit longer. We’ve got a special treat to tie you off for just a few months. Vic Horvath of Calgary, Alberta (now residing in Victoria, British Columbia) exposes the beauty within dark times. Encompassing the folk/country genre, Vic draws from blues and indie writing styles as well, exercising their finger picking skills to produce jangly dirt kickin’ hits to soul stretching indie acoustic ballads.
Vic Horvath just knows how to write good songs. Boasting a playing style that utilizes finger picking blues methods and indie influenced catchy hooks. Vic has the ability to add variability and ingenuity to their writing, applying equal focus to both the lyrics and the technicality of their music. In a brief chat with Vic they explain that in order to keep things interesting within their music, they require challenging and engaging moving parts which forces them to progress and avoid stale behaviour. This can clearly be seen in Vic’s recent album West Coast Reign. It is something that anyone can grab onto and find an anchor within it. Vic is not afraid to explore and produce sounds that push her own genre, such as in the song Sow it in Spells, a catchy tune in which they conduct janky melodies and out of the ordinary chords progressions. Vic flexes their musical muscles with the ability to resolve a tune by always bringing it back to the listener, playing with the audiences attraction to the uncomfortable. With this, Vic share’s the same driving force and variability that we see in some of today’s prominent artists, such as earlier Shakey Graves or Rayland Baxter. Keeping things interesting as a solo artist can be difficult, Vic applies good measure to switching up tempos and time signatures, in order to keep their music engaging. Like the skin of an Arbutus tree, layers of Vic’s inner thoughts tear and fall, exposing their vulnerable side. An excerpt from their song Rats and Races, Vic sings - “I know of people, But I don't know anyone, I know of love, But I don't love anyone” - Vic reminds us that being vulnerable is the strongest that we can be. Expressing one's feelings of defeat or feeling unwanted is actually the mightiest thing you can do, let alone performing your saddest thoughts to crowds of people.
Something else that struck me was the album cover art of their album West Coast Reign. Vic explains that it came from an exercise therapy prescribed by her physician concerning their epilepsy, where they are to use both their left and right hand to draw a picture. The purpose is to try and meld the logic and the creative side of ones brain, a struggle that most artist can attest to. Multi-faceted personas can often lead to the straying of one's life course or dream – Why am I doing this? Should I call it quits? Is anyone even listening? The battle between the two sides is everlasting, trying to find a harmony between the two, well, that’s the hard part. Either way it is beautiful, and so is Vic Horvath.