If you've been following my writing for a few years, you might remember an article I wrote back in December 2010 about Mikal Blue and his Revolver Studios. That article introduced a new voice by the name of Brandon Chandler. You can check out that article here.
Produced by the legendary Andrew Williams, The High Dive is a masterpiece of pop, showcasing not only the dynamic voice of Chandler but his incredible songwriting as well. With the release of his six-song EP, Chandler is at last embracing his destiny as a pop recording artist and performer. The infectious, anthem like title track is the perfect metaphor for Chandler’s finally being able to overcome the many obstacles faced by indie artists in a competitive industry, but also the struggle of his own self-doubts and other emotional setbacks along the way. Now that he’s diving in and determined to share his array of talents with the world, there’s no stopping him.
Chandler was signed five years ago to Casablanca Media Publishing and has had more than 30 placements since then. In fact, even though The High Dive is only being released today, three songs from the EP have already received placement in hit television shows - the title track (ABC Family’s Make It Or Break It), You Bring Me Home (CW’s Life Unexpected, ABC Family’s Switched At Birth) and the original version of Blue Sunshine, which appeared on Life Unexpected and Make It Or Break It. Other shows that tapped into Chandler’s rich catalog include CBS’ Flashpoint, CTV’s Degrassi, Fakers (a Movie of the Week), BBC’s Defying Gravity, CMT’s Unstable and MTV’s High Society.
With a voice that evokes comparisons with Nate Reuss of fun., Ryan Tedder of One Republic and Adam Levine of Maroon 5, Chandler was a natural to become not just a hit songwriter, but also a pop music superstar. Williams has pulled out all the stops (along with Benj Heard, co-writer and producer of track one (The Light) to ensure that the magic tones in Chandler's voice are shared with the world.
From the opening notes of The Light (written by Chandler and Heard), we hear that magic burst forth, and it continues through all six songs. My favorites are tracks two (Beautiful and Broken), three (The High Dive) and four (At War With Love). I especially love track four, as I spent quite a few hours with Chandler in the studio when he and Williams, his co-writer and producer of the song, were working on the first acoustic version. This final version is even more amazing because it truly captures the beauty and sentiment of the song and the magic that has come out of this working relationship between Williams and Chandler.
Although the EP comes to a satisfying close with tracks five (You Bring me Home) and six (Blue Sunshine), it definitely leaves you wanting more and more.
Chandler, who released a previous full length folk-soul oriented album Make Love Sing under the name Brandon Chandler & The Revival in 2009, brings to his emergence a dynamic history of prominent collaborations and television soundtrack success. Since signing with Casablanca, he has written and recorded with writer/producers Andrew Williams (Five For Fighting), Mikal Blue (Colbie Caillat, Augustana) Jeff Dawson (Daniel Powter, Marcy Playground), as well as with singer/songwriters Jason Reeves (Colbie Caillat, Dave Stewart, Katharine McPhee) and Tim Fagan (Jason Mraz, Colbie Caillat) among many others.
Every song on this EP is ready for radio airplay, and could very well sit at the top of the charts. This is an EP to savor and enjoy. Welcome to pop music, Mr. Chandler. You have truly arrived.