Dead Is The New Black is a band that consists of longtime friends Michael Caver, Kristi Love, and Brin Stephens. They formed in 2018 and merged together a hip/hop and rock fusion. They released their debut album titled “Paint The Walls” and we were HERE for it. In all honesty, we had no idea what to expect going in. They gave us a rock n roll introduction with an energetic, fast-paced mesh of chaotic electric guitar chords and spectacular drumming! This lightly-dark but bold initiation captures your attention and leaves you wondering what’s to come. Dead Is The New Black expresses the idea of “Authentic” in the most notable fashion. While expecting gritty and foghorn loud vocals, instead you receive a rap flow delivering a hip-hop bubble around the hard-rock song.
After that killer intro, we were already captured in the music and they surprised us once again with the next song “Hunt Me Down”. Hunt Me Down had an entirely different direction than the opening of the album. The song feels more mysterious and we can credit the vocalist’s hauntingly prepossessing vocals. While she creates a sensual aura with her chilling vocals, the rapper begins to deliver yet another solid and clean-slated flow. The next song to transition into the album “Make It Out Alive” shows another characteristic to the album we haven’t seen yet. The incorporation of a more jazz-like groove with electronic EDM elements being hinted throughout the instrumental break, Dead Is The New Black shows us they are capable of more than we could have ever hoped for, and boy do they prove it.
“Spinning World” showcases more the hip-hop side to Dead Is The New Black with this funky, old-school vibe fused with multi-colored synths and brash guitar strings. By this point of the album, you're ready to expect the unexpected. You have no clue what’s coming next and we loved that! It’s the entire mysterious feel of the band and not knowing what’s to come but preparing yourself for what’s to come.
“Fifty Shades Of You” was an eerily addictive song that begins with the rap flow floating on top of a cinematic sound effect in which fabricates the idiosyncratic energy of the song. The incredible vocals complete the entire “weird” of fifty shades of you. But who said weird wasn’t a good thing? A highly noticeable song on this album, “Waste Away” felt like an progressive-rock n roll classic and we loved every minute of it! Especially the big belted delivery by the vocalist that hits you like a wrecking ball in the beginning. Conveying the passion and emotion behind the song! The next song we enjoyed thoroughly. “Guilt” had us focused in on the lyrics with it’s retro image being presented through the music. The closing song of the album was highly dope because it reminded me a lot of the opening piece. They caught us in the beginning with their exhilarating introduction and then ending it off with a invigorating, up-tempo closing with a strong bass moving the song in a radical direction and muffled vocals adding detail to the dimension. From start to finish you become as one with Dead Is The New Black, and by the time the album is finished you’re thirsting for more. Dead Is The New Black will be performing around Southern California soon so if you become infatuated with the music and would like to hear them live feel free to connect yourself with the band and be on the lookout!
Listen to a single off the new album here. Read more about this ground breaking band in our interview below!
Welcome to BuzzMusic! Can you please tell our readers a little about yourselves?
Dead Is The New Black is a hip hop act from Irvine California with heavy rock and electronic influences. The group currently consists of lead vocalist and front man Brin Stephens, long time collaborator Michael Caver and features Kristi Love on supporting vocals. We formed in late 2018 from former band Skinperiod taking the music in more of a hip hop direction.
Tell us about the album “Paint The Walls” and how the title reflects the theme of the album.
Paint The Walls is a collection of songs written over a couple years and the feeling and thoughts that inspire the music for the most part feels stuck in our heads when you don't have many outlets. With this release we hope to "paint the walls" as to say with our thoughts and ideas that we express in the form of music. It taps into a darker side of ourselves but the point is that it's all open for display.
What are some of your personal favorite songs off your own album “Paint The Walls”?
Brin: I think my favorite song on this album is Fifty Shades of You. Mike and myself wrote the lyrics together and Kristi sang her part exactly the way we were looking for. There was a lot of collaboration in the creation of this track which makes it more enjoyable for me upon re-listening.
Mike: I'd have to say Spinning World mainly because of how many places it goes. The guitar work is A1. The almost cheese rap in the beginning makes me laugh and sets the tone, I love the lines, "When everybody runs away, prays to God to save the day, take my hand and stay with me and let come whatever may..." Vocal layering is dope. It's fun and atmospheric.
What are some challenges you’ve discovered in creating this album?
The biggest challenge was accepting that everybody has different ears and everybody will hear this album differently. We definitely have a vision and we are both anxious and excited for people to discover what we are about and the musical ideas we enjoying projecting into the world.
What do you hope your fans get out of your new album "Paint The Walls"?
We hope that you find at least 1 song you really enjoy listening to. Something you would share with a friend, play on your way to work, if you're in a down mood or maybe we inspire you to make your own music or even learn to play the parts yourself at home. Spread the love!
What can we expect next! Any news you'd like to share with us?
Our first show is a Battle of the Bands April 20th at California Sound Studios in Lake Forest and if you're in the orange county area we will be doing shows here and there this summer. Come out and see us! We'd love to see y'all. Add us on facebook, instagram and twitter so you can't miss the dates!
Connect with Dead Is The New Black!