Joe GransingerThursday,3 January 2013

The Snap:

Active Child is the stage name of electronic/indie artist Pat Grossi, who rang in the New Year with his new song “His Eye is On the Sparrow”. The 16-track album “You Are All I See” is currently available on iTunes for less than 10 dollars.

The Download:

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what Active Child sounds like. Not many artists have such a wide variety of styles, but going from church-chorus highs to soft electronic beats in just a few minutes seems to be his forte. Some tracks sound extremely similar to the voice of Justin Vernon from Bon Iver, while others have more similarities to a Radiohead song. Even though his voice has changed since childhood, traces of his involvement in a Philadelphia boy’s choir are still quite evident. But where he got the idea to mix that beautiful voice with 80’s-influenced synthesized indie-pop, however, is beyond me.

His breakthrough (and my personal favorite) single “Hanging On” shows many different sides of Active Child. From the soft intro to the deeper vocals midway through, it single-handedly shows you what to expect for the rest of the album. And if the elegant, beautiful combination of a gospel-choir and soft indie is what you’re looking for, the opening track “You Are All I See” will be right up your alley.

I’m not personally a huge fan of the songs that are heavy on the churchy-chorus sound – such as ‘You Are All I See’ — and once things start to get softer and higher than Bon Iver, it starts to bring back a lot of childhood church memories for me. Like when I used to go to Sunday school and all that jazz, except now it just makes me feel like some  kind of atheist-demon who doesn’t believe in that stuff anymore. I’m pretty sure the next time I step into a church I’ll immediately burst into flames of hellfire, guilt and shame, and that’s not something I like to think about very often. Which also seems like a pretty solid reason not to go back to church. Ever.

Even though a couple of his songs are so holy and innocent that they remind me of how horrible of a person I am, the majority of them don’t sound like they came straight from the Vatican and are very easy on the ears. If you’re into softer indie with a smooth voice on top of chill electronic rhythms, I would definitely recommend giving Active Child a listen.

Hat Tips:

ActiveChild, SoundCloud, Image Credit: Flickr

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