Half Alive have once again shattered our expectations when it comes to both songs and videos. The Long Beach trio (Josh Taylor, Brett Kramer, and J. Tyler Johnson) had big shoes to fill when it came to crafting a follow up for their debut album, Now, Not Yet. However, the boys knocked it out of the park with “What’s Wrong” and introspective yet upbeat single. The track addresses the stress of wanting to solve all the world’s problems. Yet realizing, that sometimes the best place to start is to change within. It’s a heartfelt and honest message. But, it is still infused with the danceable indie pop beat Half Alive is known for.
Lyrics are a big strong suit for the band and “What’s Wrong” is no exception. The core message of the song in the chorus is: “the time’s always right to fix what’s wrong.” Which seems simple, but can be hard to confront. Facing your challenges head on and addressing your inner problems is a lot to come to terms with. Half Alive vocalizes how chaotic the current world climate it, yet still manages to push some positivity into it.
Production-wise, “What’s Wrong” is clean and fun. Taylor, Kramer, and Johnson worked with production duo @OjiVolta on the track. Having @OjiVolta’s perspective adds another layer of energy to the track. Long time listeners can tell that the single is smooth and builds on what worked on the band’s previous album. It’s softer to help Josh’s vocals stand out, but still has a beat that makes us (and Half Alive) want to dance.
Lastly, we can’t talk about a Half Alive track without discussing the music video. If you know you know. If you don’t, well you’re in for a treat. Besides glorious songs, Half Alive is known for their funky music videos with cutting edge choreography. Every step and hand motion is perfectly planned. The “What’s Wrong” video takes place in a retro home with dim lighting and the boys in suits. It follows Josh as he moves from room to room surrealistically depicting what seems like a panic attack. When he moves into rooms where the other band members are, we get some crazy dance sequences. So basically, you have to see it with your own eyes.
Well, if Half Alive does not need to be scared of the sophomore slump. “What’s Wrong” is realistic, heartfelt, but still doesn’t take itself too seriously. With another incredibly choreographed music video, it’s easy to see that the band holds themselves to a high standard. They are starting off album two with a bang and we are eager to see where it goes from here.
Featured Image: Vevo/RCA Records