By: Matt Mackenzie
If you are first hearing about This Pale Fire, then you should be informed that he is a self-taught singer and songwriter, all the designs for the album/single covers are created by him, and the guitar you hear though the twelve songs on Alchemy is self-played. A triple threat in terms of artists. A singer, musician, and an artist. What more could you ask from the man? Being gifted all three of those areas means that this man has potential for greatness.
This Pale Fire, also known as Corban Koschak, is one of the most original voices I have heard in a long time. He is an easy listen that can make you forget about any little problem that may be plaguing your mind or heart. I have just recently learned about This Pale Fire but I loved every song from this album. I get an extremely soulful and melodic vibe from it, along with making me feel that he puts his whole heart into what he writes. It is almost as if he is reaching out his emotions in hope to connect to his listener. A simple sound with mellow background sound from the drums goes so far in his work. In the words of Levi Patel, “Alchemy naturally weaves together emotive, heartfelt lyrics with stripped back guitar, delicate strings and pianos.
For me, the song Delicate Words is the highlight of this album. It sounds as if Koschak is fully opening himself emotionally and relating to anyone that either had or has a significant other. Your significant other is the one you lean on in times of sorrow, turn to in hardship, and appreciate every single day just for being in your life. Delicate Words sends an undertone of love and togetherness that all who hear should hold close. A genuinely moving song that hits the heart, a truly impressive work of art.
The other runners up for the best song on the album would be Float Out and Curse. For Float Out, I find it thoroughly enjoyable mainly for the clear to hear guitar. It adds a certain level of soulfulness and a calming factor. Another factor that makes this song enjoyable is the female melodic voice that is added into the chorus. It fits extremely well with the song. The other song I mention, Curse, gives me a southern feeling while listening. A few guitar chords set a tone of seriousness and with the opening line of “I’ve left me home, a curse on my bones, a long rode I ride, with no end in sight” can reach all of us. We don’t know what the future will hold, so we travel down a blind path, taking its narrow turns and going up and down the hills or valleys on this journey. This journey may be long; this journey, however, does not have to be traveled alone.
Corban Koschak talked about how he felt towards Alchemy, saying “Alchemy is a dark and raw look into who I am as an artist. When I approached this album, I wanted to write something personal and honest. Something that left me totally exposed.” This album is thrown into the rock genre but when I listened to it, it did not feel like rock to me. Maybe it could be called Indie/Alternative. Whichever you call it, just know it is a must listen.