by Thomas Bedward June 14, 2021
If you regularly follow of our feeds, you’ll be no stranger to the amazing work that Taylor Conley and Designed Conviction have been doing. A powerful cause that provides a unique platform for the incarcerated, as well as a way for ex-felons to showcase their artistry in all forms, Designed Conviction has become one of the most powerful and important causes in modern music, expanding their reach to include music, art, and a dedicate podcast as ways of showcasing another side of the men and women behind bars.
A true passion project, Designed Conviction was founded by Taylor Conley in 2018 with one goal in mind, to break the stigma around incarcerated and formerly incarcerated individuals by promoting positive rehabilitation through art, media, and marketing design. Convicted of a crime that he didn’t commit, Taylor began reaching out from behind bars early in 2018, fighting against a wave of stigma and looking for any opportunity to turn every negative into a triumphant positive.
The latest in a long line of releases from Taylor and Designed Conviction, ‘So Cold’ is an EP with a story to tell. Released collaboratively with singer-songwriter Caleb Twidwell, whose voice and artistic talent brings soul and heartache to every song, the EP is the story of a man’s life, one who is serving life in prison and doing everything he can to find hope in a hopeless place. A story told over four impressive songs, ‘So Cold’ was born from a shared past, with Caleb himself having spent some years behind walls and fences, in the grips of the same system and cell block as Taylor.
After connecting in prison, Taylor and Caleb joined forces, and they set to work recording the demo tapes for ‘So Cold’, building the songs and saving them to cassettes. Years later, after Caleb had been released, he got in touch with Taylor, and together, they revived the project, looking to make a difference, bring hope to the hopeless and make dreams real. After working out the details, the pair arranged for Caleb to get in the studio and record the tracks, putting the final finishing touches on a release that has been five years in the making.
The first of two parts, ‘So Cold’ takes you back to the glory days of Nirvana and Pearl jam, lashing out with power, promise, and a most importantly, hope. Delivering four tracks that will capture your attention and push for positive change, the EP shines a light on two of Designed Conviction and Caleb’s biggest releases to date, ‘Can’t Turn Back Now’ and ‘These Eyes’, which have earned over 75,000 combined streams on Spotify alone.
With a new distribution deal through Universal Music Group’s Empire Distribution, we can expect the second part of Designed Conviction’s new EP to come soon, with the artists promising a country counterpart to ‘So Cold’ hard-cut rock aesthetic.
Tune in to the new EP above and be sure you head over to Designed Conviction’s website where you can learn more about the services provided, as well as learn about ways you can volunteer and help, and how you can have your story told.
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