Chris Scheler is an alternative singer-songwriter based in York PA. He has been a frontman, guitarist and bassist for several bands over the past 15 years and has played at many venues throughout Pennsylvania and Maryland. His EP release “Alone Inside My Head”, features five original songs for which he hired producer/engineer, Luis Rivera of River Run Music to polish the recordings and prepare them for a release. This is undoubtedly a confident and varied set of tunes, one which is not only reflective of Chris Scheler’s versatile songwriting abilities but also goes beyond the boundaries of copycat corporate rock. There ought to be some things all rock fans – no matter what subgenre or trend you’re currently aligned with – can agree on: Mixing the influences of the Stone Temple Pilots with that of The Beatles and Led Zeppelin is good. Big banging drums are great. Roaring rock n’ roll bombast, if it’s catchy and melodic, is great. If we can agree on these things, then we can we all agree that Chris Scheler is awesome.
The most powerful thing about Chris Scheler is the amount of melody he manages to infuse into his songs whether raucously bombastic like “Narcissist” or sweetly pop twisted, like “Time”, so it’s only natural that “Alone Inside My Head” has a strong focus on them.
Scheler’s voice also has an iconic timbre to it, which in some instances remind me of George Harrison. The dirty guitar riffs roar on this EP, and especially on “Deliver Me” and “Halfway Home”, their thick presence and firm drive having a big presence on the entire recording.
There are many risks and interesting moments captured on this record. The vocals on “Tachometer” for one, sees Chris Scheler push his cords to a higher level, and it’s by far his best vocal performance on the EP. “Halfway Home” is a cool rock song with its extraordinary drums and high gain of overdrive.
On the verse, the guitar turns to fuzz and vocals are really melodic while the pre-chorus sounds really cool with its sleek sound of sliding down tones in harmony. In the contrast, the chorus is very jumpy, making this song probably the coolest of the bunch.
“Time” shows off Scheler’s more retrospective side, almost giving listeners a brief pause in the energy for a moment of reflection before the show closes down. Quite pointedly, “Narcissist” is expertly designed for blasting on the highway, windows down.
The track milks a driving guitar riff and an incessant power chorus for maximum rhythmic impact while Scheler successfully tests the limits of his range, setting loose the fiery rasp that is a potent counterpoint to his lower-end warbles.
There’s something intrinsically badass about this song, and it comes in many different forms. It could be the thick guitars. It could also be Scheler spectacular vocals, too. Whatever it is, this song really sets the bar on this EP. All in all, “Alone Inside My Head” is an effective document of underground rock’s powers. It never wants to pass as high art, but it’s as artful as utilitarian rock music gets.