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Von Strantz – Rebel Heart

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Von Strantz is not a newcomer to Swept, nor the music scene. The publication has had the privilege of covering them before, and now, three albums deep, the dynamic sister duo has released a new single and accompanying video that is heartfelt (pardon the pun) and powerful in an interestingly diverse way. ‘Rebel Heart‘ is a masterful melange of all manner of genres and is now on repeat on my playlist. There is some wonderful mix of 90s synth, celtic ballad, and even undertones of what could very easily be bluegrass. The addition of a banjo would be all the song needed to get to that latter point.

IMG_9288That all being said, musically, ‘Rebel Heart‘ is whole. It is a complete song, for sure and from haunting harmony to bellowing bass, and from sweet strings and synth to vivacious vocals, Von Strantz really know how to make an amazing mix of music come together in a sullen, storytelling way.

Now, this single does not drop until the 13th of this month but Swept is lucky enough to have a sneak peek for everyone. Just take a look and listen and then we’ll reconvene…

 

 

Anyone who caught the little jam session in the alley will now know of my yearning for that additional bluegrass feel or accent that could have been thrown into the mix. After all, the jam in the alley featured both a mandolin and a banjo. My ideas of missed opportunities aside, I think it is important to reflect on the video to some extent here. I have to start by admitting that I am not entirely sure what is going on here, but the sense I get (thanks not only to the title) is that our main character simply cannot conform; she would rather break than bend…and to some extent, she does break; left by the wayside as her partner moves on to greater things.

VonStrantzThere are many shifts throughout the video from chasing down the van off the top, to driving it full of kids to the market, to murder, to being beaten in the street, to finally pulling a piano from the van to the alley to play for a place to sleep while the former partner in crime plays a theatre of what we can assume to be adoring fans. Again, I’m not sure of the full breadth of the story, but I very much feel in the music and see in the video that there is a simple inability for our heroine to give herself up in exchange for fame and fortune. Rest assured that many musicians share that feeling. And we have to ask ourselves, which audience is the more appreciative? The one that paid to see this new star? Or the community sharing music in the alley, being given the gift of a new and heartfelt song? However rebellious that heart is…

The music business is, sadly, a business and there are many of us out there who want to share music…not business strategy. In this mere five minute track, there is a powerful and hopefully inspirational push towards the resilience of the would-be musician and the community that music can create. And if I’ve got this whole thing wrong, then at least we can still enjoy a kickass song in Von Strantz’s ‘Rebel Heart‘.