You could be forgiven for not knowing the name Clay Markley right now. A talented, but criminally underrated artist, Clay took to Wisconsin’s independent scene in 2019 with the release of his debut single, ‘Fresh’, but it wasn’t until a few years later that he really started to gain momentum. Fast forward to 2021, and Clay has well and truly hit his stride, releasing an acclaimed debut album, and the undeniable alt-rock gem of ‘This Look’.
Written, recorded, and produced by himself under the indie label King Baby Records, ‘This Look’ sees Clay opening up a new chapter in his musical career, one that builds on his past singles and promises nothing but big things. Flowing with a unique, gritty sound that reflects his Hartland upbringing, the new single conjures up stark imagery and homegrown ideals, digging deep into the dirt and coming back with a resolute, almost defiant sound.
As the track begins, Clay lays down a heavy line of lingering, isolated guitar chords that flicker and ignite, creating a slow-burning melody that becomes the core of the song. Soaring vocals fill the empty spaces within, creating a familiar grunge aesthetic that will appeal to fans of ‘90s rock, but just as you think you have the song figured out, Clay changes things up in the most unexpected of ways. Through the mire, he brings a fierce burst of fleeting, digital tones that cascade haphazardly, blending the darker tones with upbeat, modern slow-trap elements that add a whole new dimension to the track.
A unique and well-executed concept, the music lays a kaleidoscopic foundation for Clay’s vocals, and when he hits the mark with lines like, “she’s got that look inside her eyes, the kind that makes you feel alive”, the full weight of the track becomes all too clear.
Available now on all major platforms, including Spotify above, ‘This Look’ is an impressive introduction to Clay’s unique style for the uninitiated, as well as a bold illustration of his passion, talent, and unparalleled creative vision.
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