You may have come across Byron’s one-man band behemoth Nathan Kaye on tour with the likes of Pete Murray, Paul Kelly, Birds of Tokyo, Grammy winner Jason Mraz, or as an actor in films like Muriel’s Wedding or One Less God. The multi-instrumental virtuoso has unveiled an absolute banger from his forthcoming album ‘Movement of Change’ with the release of his brand-new single with the attractive title, Keep Your Head Up.
In his live shows, Kaye’s storytelling style, often seems almost a Robbin Williams-level of random, but always lands both a comedic, inspiring and poignant punch. However, in Keep Your Head Up, the focus is directed toward the frustrations we’ve all been collectively feeling during these unprecedented times (albeit, perhaps a bit less in QLD). The song deftly highlights the polarisation we’ve been witnessing online where intense ideological battles have severed many friends and family from each other.
“The confusion and animosity with the ‘us vs them’ mentality that has arisen in our communities has been taking a toll on most people’s mental health since CV19 began,” says Kaye. “I wanted to release something that would somehow help us snap out of whatever intense headspace we’re in and make us realise that these online arguments over beliefs are just not worth it. We are much better than this. We have to find more sapiential ways of interacting because long after the heated words are typed on a keyboard, we are left with real humans just feeling real feelings of wanting to feel safe.”
Opening with a Matrix-like phone call & the haunting lapsteel slide guitar wailing underneath, before the thunderous 90’s trip-hop-like beat thumps through, we are immediately on board Nathan’s journey. All the while, Kaye’s smooth, raspy voice charactered by the experience of a life well-lived, delivers astute observations until the uplifting hook of the chorus lifts us out of whatever stress we found ourselves in.
Recorded in an off-grid, eco-friendly, solar-powered studio nestled in the rainforests of the Byron hinterland, where many upcoming artists have been recording their new releases, but that is about to come to an abrupt end.
“The subsequent scramble of city folk to regional areas like Byron Bay to escape lockdowns has caused some major disparities in the rental and property markets,” Kaye explains. “People have been losing their homes in the communities they’ve lived in for years. I really felt this deeply, especially after my family got displaced during lockdowns by the sale of the house we live in and the desperation that hit us hard with trying to find security for our kids. This tune came out in a flood of emotion, which made me feel better and helped create a better mental perspective.”
Sonically the song has a bit of that trip-hop vibe of the 90’s, not unlike acts as Massive Attack, blended with the fearless vulnerability of artists like Ben Harper and the anthem style of Vance Joy.
Listen to Keep Your Head Up HERE.
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