Stunning Roots Pop from Portland. - Vivian Leva & Riley Calcagno: Love and Chains
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posted 14 Jan 2021 by Krister Axel
A laid-back collection of personal vignettes exploring the everlasting beauty of nature, and the rejuvenating power of an afternoon spent soaking up the sun.

Indie newcomers Vivian Leva & Riley Calcagno have put together a gorgeous collection of folk and country-inspired songs, leveraging a powerful blend of lead vocals from these two young songwriters. "Love and Chains" is a preview single from the new album that will be out on Free Dirt Records on March 12, 2021. A music video by Ryan Jorgensen offers up the woodsy and psychedelic backdrop for these personal vignettes exploring the everlasting beauty of nature, and the rejuvenating power of an afternoon spent soaking up the sun.

For this folk duo there is an element of sadness that touches on this entire album, simmering just beneath the perfect harmonies and sweet-sounding melodies. Like so much great Folk music that has come before them, Leva and Calcagno are responding to a unique era of social unrest and public violence with their own statement of hope and resilience. "Love and Chains" creates a warm and inviting refuge from one of the darkest eras in American history, as we spend a few welcome moments away from our everyday sorrows in the gentle grip of a lazy day.

This is old-soul roots music for the next generation, produced by GRAMMY-winning heavyweight Joel Savoy at his Louisiana studio. These elegant gems of simple groove and melody weave threads of old-time country into the stuff of modern folk-pop, and deliver a consistent counterpoint of style that ranges from Taylor Swift to Gillian Welch, and from Jackson Browne to Peter Bradley Adams, capturing both a folksy sense of gravitas and a modern clarity of tone. Fans of indie folk and melodic Americana should take note of this self-titled debut from Vivian Leva & Riley Calcagno that was "made from this moment, but built to last." Every one of these songs occupies a unique space in the spectrum between roots-pop and pure country twang.

About the Author

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Krister Bjornson Axel

Ashland, Oregon

Paris, France. Madison, Wisconsin. Los Angeles. Ashland, Oregon. Ottawa. I write music, I write about music, and I write code. See also: photography, prose, podcasting. I have 1 gorgeous wife, 2 amazing kids, and many interests.


Recent Awards: 2020 ND (Photo) Honorable Mention, 2020 Accenti Writing Contest Finalist


Read my poetry here.