In 2010, Tank Stevens, who grew up in Small Town (Brantley), Alabama, graduated from Troy University with a BS in Music Production and Audio Technology minoring in Graphic Design. In less than a month after graduating Tank had established Studio 357, a small scale recording studio catering to solo acts and freelance work acquired throughout the internet. Owning a fully equipped and functioning recording studio is definitely a plus for Stevens, as it allows him the creative freedom he needs to carve out his own musical lane. Tank is currently ready to share his newly recorded music with the masses. June 6, 2017 sees the release of his new EP, “Life Lessons.” It contains five new songs that will be digitally distributed on all major download platforms. There will also be a limited count of CD’s available. In addition, the single “Janie Lane” and the B-Side “The One,” is set for a mid-July release.
Creating something creative and different, while still being listenable and enjoyable is a rare thing. Try accomplishing that feat with an acoustic guitar, a spoken-word inflected singing voice, and an alternative rock attitude. Tank Stevens, a multi-instrumentalist and recording specialist, proved he could do just that.
It would have been easy for Tank to simply become a clone artist and try to capitalize on the acoustic or singer-songwriter genre. This determined man showed that he intended to do no such thing, and succeed in making something of himself with his new EP.
The songwriting is deeper than most bands with twice the amount of writers and instrumentation while the guitars certainly speak for themselves. Tank’s vocal deliveries sit somewhere between the low-key resonating melody of Everlast and the poetic prancing of Lou Reed, and he usually hits the pitch he needs too without straining. His deep understated growl is more than enough to get the point across.
This starts things out on a good foot; “Twenty Bucks” begins with the catchy opening picked chords that are repeated in the song. The drums kick in and the track takes off. The chorus is powerful and those repeated chords don’t tire throughout the song. “Life Exchange” is up next and this is it.
From the start you can tell this is going to be a song you can get into. Every instrument compliments the other perfectly in this one. Both the bass and the drums match the guitars really well and the chorus can easily stick in your head all day. I could praise this song all day from its catchy beat to the lyrics. If you listen to just one Tank Stevens song, make it this one, it’s that good.
“Reconstructed Heart” is another one that caught on me the first time I heard it. The guitars are very catchy and take on an almost Southern rock sounding style in places. Stevens’ unique vocal delivery stands out more here than anywhere else and really adds to the music.
The title track “Life Lesson,” is where Tank puts on his Everlast cap and digs in deep both lyrically and vocally. “Something Out Of The Sky” sees Stevens plug in the effects and flesh out the arrangement, with what sounds like the most layered instrumental on the record.
Tank Stevens’ talent, compositional skills and playing style are second to none. As a songwriter he crafts pieces that resonate and impact on an emotional level. Once in a while, during a rare period of emotional intensity in your life, a recording emerges, without all the bells and whistles, that goes straight to the core and perfectly articulates what you’re feeling. This is one of those recordings.