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June 6, 2018
 
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Surreal Nation

Sometimes, it’s just a matter of time before all the right pieces come together to create an indie/alt rock powerhouse. Just a few years ago, guitarist Paul Joseph and vocalist Nikki Nation were performing as an acoustic folk duo at a small restaurant in their hometown of Smyrna, Delaware. Now, with the addition over the past few years of Jackson Vari (lead guitar), bassist Kevin Curry and drummer Gene Nelson, Surreal Nation – whose name blends Paul’s and Nikki’s given last names – rocks throughout their home state and everywhere from Philly to NYC. They’ve also opened for nationally recognized touring artists like Jeff Ruby (Nashville) and Days N Dayze (Houston). Their dynamic new EP I Know Better marks a high point of their evolution into to a multi-faceted five piece band.
Paul and Nikki first met when their sons were on the same soccer team in 2011 For three years, while Paul played keys in another band, they were just good acquaintances while their boys became friends. One day when Nikki was in Paul’s house talking to his wife, he began noodling with Dashboard Confessional’s “Hands Down” and heard Nikki singing along. Impressed with her vocals, he invited her over to sing again. She joined him at one of his gigs and soon the two were a full-fledged duo, playing at open mics and coffee shops before getting the restaurant gig. They performed this way for a year. Then, seeking a bigger sound with deeper grooves in the hopes of gaining more high profile gigs, in 2015, after some auditioning they brought on Jackson Vari.
“Adding Jackson on the bass gave us the fuller sound that we were looking for,” Paul says. “As a duo, I used to say we were like Iron and Wine but with a female singer. Once Jackson joined, we quickly realized that we can be more diverse, and stand apart from other bands, by switching instruments. He and I would switch between electric guitar, acoustic guitar, and bass. At that point, I would define our sound as folk-rock with a blues influence. We recorded our second EP Wash Me Clean as a trio and released it in early 2016. Seeking a more organic drum sound, we added Gene at the end of 2016, and Kevin joined shortly thereafter. Our sound got heavier and faster, and we knew our Iron and Wine days were behind us. The chemistry between the five of us is incredible and has taken our music to places Nikki and I couldn’t have imagined just a few years earlier.”
I Know Better EP (2018)
The I Know Better EP reflects a confident, focused unit that’s long past its days of switching off lead singers and trying to find its place in the indie music world.
With Paul and Jackson as chief songwriters, Surreal Nation penned the five songs as a concept recording of sorts, trying to keep the same theme throughout. Creating haunting, noir-ish imagery, they created a single female character who is navigating her life in Hollywood during its golden age. They bring raucous energy to the playfully titled “Would You Do Me the Honor of Being My Mexican Divorce,” about a quest for true love instead of just expensive trinkets of affection. The band shifts tempos from cool and sensual to a more propulsive rhythm on the title track, about the woman’s understanding that she’s charting dangerous territory in her latest relationship – but is all in anyway. Other highlights are the edgy, percussive “I Can Feel The Night,” about a descent into despair, but pushing through as the night fades away and daylight dawns; and “Spirit Is Silent,” a deeply soulful ballad that takes a hard look at a loved one with substance abuse issues. Its key line is, “My spirit has gone silent in the absence of you.
Capturing the essence of I Know Better, Paul says, “These songs were written over a time period that began with Jackson and I both being in dark places in our lives, but ended with us coming out of those places and being better for having those experiences.”
The I Know Better EP reflects a confident, focused unit that’s long past its days of switching off lead singers and trying to find its place in the indie music world.
With Paul and Jackson as chief songwriters, Surreal Nation penned the five songs as a concept recording of sorts, trying to keep the same theme throughout. Creating haunting, noir-ish imagery, they created a single female character who is navigating her life in Hollywood during its golden age. They bring raucous energy to the playfully titled “Would You Do Me the Honor of Being My Mexican Divorce,” about a quest for true love instead of just expensive trinkets of affection. The band shifts tempos from cool and sensual to a more propulsive rhythm on the title track, about the woman’s understanding that she’s charting dangerous territory in her latest relationship – but is all in anyway. Other highlights are the edgy, percussive “I Can Feel The Night,” about a descent into despair, but pushing through as the night fades away and daylight dawns; and “Spirit Is Silent,” a deeply soulful ballad that takes a hard look at a loved one with substance abuse issues. Its key line is, “My spirit has gone silent in the absence of you.
Capturing the essence of I Know Better, Paul says, “These songs were written over a time period that began with Jackson and I both being in dark places in our lives, but ended with us coming out of those places and being better for having those experiences.”

Notes for the artist:
This page will always be here under your name in "Featured Artists" You can always send us an updated Bio using 'CONTACT' on Menu at the top of page.

# (PT) Name length Rating Notes
1 9:00 Would You Do Me The Honor of Becoming My Mexican Divorce? 02:29 4
2 9:02 I Know Better 05:42 4
3 9:08 I Can Feel The Night 03:08 4
4 9:11 Hangtime 03:50 4
5 9:15 Spirit is Silent 04:09 4

Full album Featured Artist
 

Chris Medlock
Chris Medlock is a singer songwriter whose dark, melodic Celtic folk is poetry laced with one more for the road, as if James Taylor was in conversation with Dylan on a dark night, trying to forgive themselves for relationships lost.
When not writing music and playing open mics, gigs, and house parties, Chris engages with his other two passions: traveling the world teaching English and helping people with mental health problems.
His travels have taken him to Tibetan monasteries, Italian vineyards and housing estates in the North of England.
Chris' single Jennifer is a sapient mix of the pop, rock and flowing folk, telling a story of the one that got away.
Produced by The Animal Farm, Jennifer is out now.


Notes for the artistt
: This page will always be here under your name in "Featured Artists". You can always send us an updated Bio using 'CONTACT' on Menu at the top of page..

# (PT) Artist Name length Rating Notes
6 9:19 Chris Medlock Jennifer 04:57 4 New song
7 9:24 Abigail Scott Damaged 05:09 4
8 9:29 After Alice Morning 04:18 4
9 9:34 AirCrash Detectives Thar She Blows 03:04 4 New song
10 9:37 Alan Garmonsway Song for Sue 02:28 4
11 9:40 Allen and Douglas Dark Matters 05:15 4 New song
12 9:45 Austin Colσn  The Path Ahead 04:40 4
13 9:50 Blue Return Alright with me 03:24 4
14 9:53 J.Delfino Inside of Me 03:25 4
15 9:57 Lazuli Shoals Rosemary 02:06 4
16 9:59 Lovely is to the Bone Sunshine 03:12 4
17 10:02 Man eat Grass Party InMaHead 02:36 4
18 10:05 Mars Bonfire Abuse 04:08 4
19 10:09 Rolan Crowfoot I Guess the Party's Over 03:58 4
20 10:13 Rolan Crowfoot Sunshine Girl 03:39 4
21 10:17 TolbertToz Always 04:37 4
22 10:21 Desmond Grundy If Not For You 03:09 4
23 10:25 Gamma Ray Sam Hadrian's Lover 06:08 4
24 10:31 Joey Aces and The Deal Fall 06:02 4
25 10:37 Angus Powell Trenches 03:47 4
26 10:41 The Infinity Process More Than You Deserve 02:28 4
27 10:43 Allen and Douglas I Feel Alive 03:19 4
28 10:47 Craig Anscombe Someday 03:44 4
29 10:51 Crawling Solo Sail Away 04:44 4
30 10:56 Jambrains Fade 03:41 4
31 10:59 JJ McGuigan In All Honesty 02:40 4
32 11:02 Juxta Peaceful Tranquility 03:54 4
33 11:06 Larre U-A Ignorance 03:45 4
34 11:10 Mama's Broke Black Rock Beach 04:01 4
35 11:14 Nina Soderquist Hard To Say I'm Sorry 03:40 4
36 11:18 Over The Moon By The Mark 03:33 4
37 11:21 Post Rapture Party Bats Dance 03:31 4
38 11:25 Ricci Valice So The Story Goes 04:33 4
39 11:30 Rosegarden Funeral Party Horror Music 04:40 4
40 11:34 Soft White Glow Danse Macabre 05:12 4
41 11:40 The Infinity Process Savior 02:49 4
42 11:42 The Innocent Bystanders Emerald Eyes 04:09 4
43 11:47 TJ Doyle Change 04:57 4
44 11:52 Tony Randall Realm 03:39 4
45 11:55 Anchor Detail Warmth 04:48 4
46 12:00 Angus Powell Hole in My Heart 02:53 4
47 12:03 Coastal Horizon World is Changing 01:58 4
48 12:05 Cold California Collide 02:53 4
49 12:08 Crawling Solo No Mans Land 07:28 4
50 12:16 Dark Stone Enough 04:02 4
51 12:20 Ethan Keller Carried Away 03:53 4
52 12:24 Fallen Child Never Severed 04:42 4
53 12:29 From Ashes to New Crazy 03:06 4
54 12:32 Indie Soull A Better Me For You 03:18 4
55 12:35 Jambrains The Curse Of Shane MAcGowan 02:48 4
56 12:38 Jean Cabbie & The Secret Admirer Society Oh Donna 03:40 4
57 12:42 JJ'S Music Retalliation My Red Polka Dot Balloon 03:46 4
58 12:46 Landing on the Sun Monstrous 04:08 4
59 12:50 Landing on the Sun Vandra 04:29 4
60 12:55 Larre U-A Sinister 03:04 4
61 12:58 Les Paul's (The Paul's) Lorraine 06:18 4
62 1:04 Riff Reign Sleepwalking 03:56 4
63 1:08 lori nebo Standing Stronger 04:01 4
64 1:12 MetaQuorum Jonathan Livingston 03:48 3
65 1:16 St.Cyr-White Linda’s Songs 03:36 3
66 1:20 Scott Smith I Will Love You 04:02 3
67 1:24 Andre Nostalgic Brown Faith Race 03:07 3
68 1:27 Wilson Daniels Whiskey Bride 03:49 3
69 1:31 Dynamos Shake, Rattle and Roll 03:01 3
70 1:34 Garry Moore Come Ride With Me 04:50 3
71 1:39 Meresha Jungle Potion 03:29 3
72 1:43 Midnight Crisis (NYC) (Get Home) Dangerous 04:22 3
73 1:47 Nicumo Guilt 04:52 3
74 1:52 Kristin Rebecca Wackos And Weirdos 03:03 3
75 1:55 DJ Spin The Golden Lady - feat. Lizwi 05:10 3