Last night I attended a birthday party for one of my cousins. Although the party was adult-themed, there were of course a few kids in attendance. Long story short, with a twelve year old being responsible for the DJ duties, I got the chance to see what the kids were listening to these days on their select Pandora stations. The age of a music critic is akin to dog years, but everything I heard seemed to mesh together as some sort of extended techno-pop beat with various crooners taking center stage. The songs were catchy, but the singers seemed to lack a certain thing to turns a song into music. What they were missing was passion.
I must admit, Nick de la Hoyde does not have a name that easily rolls off the tongue like T-Pain or R.Kelly. However, like those latter folks, he makes the same type of jams that inevitably become stuck in one's head. I wrote about Nick in this very same column at the beginning of the year, following the release of his single "The Longest Way," and later, "By My Side." Aside from AHH, he has also been featured in a significant number of online magazines including The Source, Pop Scoop, Essentially Pop, The Examiner, Shockya.com, PopCityLifeMusic, WeDoItForTheLoveOfMusic, and All Access Magazine. Despite the fact that Nick makes pop-sounding songs, there is a clear degree of passion in his work, and the release of his appropriately titled Passion EP is further proof.
Passion is an impressive debut EP. Nick’s real-talk-centric lyrical content is only rivaled by an equally emotive sonic mesh, combining the talents of brothers and production duo Joseph & John de la Hoyde as well as renowned Hip Hop producer Lemoyne ‘LA’ Alexander. The result is a unique melding pot; pop and alternative rock evoking visions of the future while still deeply embedded in the past. As I touched on before, "By My Side" is a testament to this blend, combining a light-hearted groove with a deeply moving hook to express Nick’s affliction with music as a source of both passion and expression.
You can stream the entire Passion EP below.
And as always, make sure to follow Nick de la Hoyde's movements on the interwebs: