EP Review: Anxiety | Kody Reeder
I wouldn’t call myself an Indie Rock veteran listener but I’ve had my moments throughout the years obsessing over Of Monsters and Men, Amy Macdonald and even Kings Of Leon. Not to mention how huge of a Killers fan I am. Doesn’t count, I know. Why am I blowing my own trumpet? I need to convince me I’m qualified to express my thoughts on this beautiful ‘Anxiety’ EP by Kody Reeder. Well, whatever. It’s my blog and I deserve the best of any genre I choose.
Having a quick look at the song titles in the 10th of July on a hot Saturday morning, I am preparing myself for some summertime sadness. ‘Insecurity’, ‘Anxiety’, ‘Nightmare’, ‘Headcase’, all seem to come from a restless place we’ve all been through or maybe still do. But let’s get right into it. ‘This is the moment…’
A sorrowful, echoing guitar paves the way of this journey with ‘Insecurity’, an utterly personal piece that almost feels like we are intruding into Kody’s most vulnerable moment, arousing his most painful story. Against the title, this is a valiant opening of the artist about losing love over his own emotional immaturity and insecurities. (literally cried here for a sec). I’ve been there. Only time heals those wounds but, let’s be honest, you will forever cry over songs like ‘Insecurity’ for there will always be fragments of the hurt inside. The guilt of not being enough, not deserving love (here come the waterworks…Ok. I’m ok). The subtle violin adds a great deal to the experience in such an elegant, discreet way while an overwhelming build-up towards the end is climaxing this emotional overflow.
‘Anxiety’ is ironically put there to relieve us a bit from the previous, heavy sentiment with a lighter sound and the mature resolution ‘I’m living with the monsters in my mind’. Still, Reeder is wide open about the killing angst that makes us fall down to our knees, take meds and even struggle to hide it with a smile. Crying chords and strings make for an emotionally-charged, ablaze instrumental that reaches its peak at 3:15 and keeps it up until the track fades away. FYI 'Anxiety' has a music video that captures the whole essense of the song perfectly. The following ‘Nightmare’ reminded me of my most beloved Keane, maybe in their Strangeland era. The mood here is brighter, more upbeat and optimistic and it’s obvious by now that the tracks are purposefully put in that order so ‘Anxiety’ gradually goes from darkness to light. ‘Nightmare’ finds Kody decisive, more powerful into the battlefield of love, both lyric and sound-wise. And that’s exactly the case with ‘Headcase’ too. Both we and Kody are forever troubled by the matters of the heart ‘I won’t let it show, I don’t want to be alone’ but we can always choose to look at it from a different angle. Maybe one with more kicks and snares to shake it all off.
‘Paige’ brings us back to this tearful place, closing the EP as melancholically as it started. Once again we witness something overly intimate, expressed with vivid details, about someone long-gone leaving their marks on everything that’s been left behind. The words sound so huge in their simplicity while the strings are piercing through us like arrows. Kody is projecting the story so lyrically that if you don’t feel anything here, you should go for an X-ray, see if your heart is still there. Not to mention that, if you’ve lost someone you love, ‘Paige’ will be your painful reminder and salvation at the same time.
All in all ‘Anxiety’ manages to hit you right in the feels in just five, comprehensive tracks that promise to bring you tears of sadness, then cheer you up with hope and vice versa. That’s the glory of life with all its ups and downs after all. Kody Reeder is asking us to take part in his open-heart surgery and it would be a crime to reject this invitation. It’s a dangerous dive into the seafloor of our hearts so, if you’re not prepared, step away please. This is for the brave ones. Thank you, Kody Reeder.
Listen to 'Anxiety':