Detroit’s Stef Chura has the ability to bring all of your emotions to a head whenever you hear her music. There’s something about how her vocals sound, how her lyrics hit home and how she reminds us of all that we experience in our daily lives. While it seems like that’s always been the case in her songs, her new full length Midnight mixes her indie rock prowess and her starkly honest words into an indie rock masterpiece.
The opening song, “All I Do is Lie” has a very open feel, not heavily structured but still very well crafted. Chura keeps it all in the pocket here, giving listeners a catchy track to get the album started but still keeping things a bit loose. The song is so earnest that it draws you into the album, serving as one of the best openers to an album in recent years. The terse growl of the guitar on “Scream” keeps that interest peaked while “Method Man” shows that Chura can not only right a track that pops off, but one you can’t get out of your head.
The album isn’t straight indie rock only, as tender indie tracks are peppered throughout the release like sprinkles on a cupcake. “Degrees” isn’t a ballad, but it has the timing of one in some ways. The softer side of how the song is played shows a different side to the Michigan native. “Sincerely Yours” is similar in that it’s not as rock as it is just easier going with touches of rock dropped here and there.
But within the album full of gems either soft or rocking, it’s the song “Jumpin’ Jack” that sparkles the brightest. With an opening that has tendencies of if The Who covered Sebadoh, the song mixes Chura’s unique voice and her gritty guitar tones with ease. The melodic and upbeat way in which the song plays out easily places her at the top of most people’s lists of those who craft songs like an artisan rather than a machine. The track is one of many that showcase the brilliance of Chura here, while the album’s entirety has songs you can’t help but place on repeat.
Midnight can be streamed on all streaming services, it can be purchased from all online music retailers or it can be picked up physically on multiple formats directly from Saddle Creek Records. Stef Chura will be on tour beginning June 19 at Sled Island in Calgary, AB Canada until August 10 at Back Room at Colectivo in Milwaukee, WI. Her complete tour dates can be accessed here.
Image Credits: Photo by Chloe Sells.