Alternative pop singer/songwriter Janelle Kroll releases her first official music video and new single “Barricade”, via NYC indie label Lokal Legend.
Shot in a Brooklyn warehouse, the video features Janelle surrounded by the talented Elisa Monte Dance Company, performing unique choreography by Tiffany Rea-Fisher. Directed by Patrick Kendall & Jessica Redish, the visual was shot in one take entirely on an Inspire 2 Drone by DJI. The single is the first off of Janelle’s upcoming release, the Barricade EP, set for release this fall.
“A barricade both protects and obstructs,” Kroll explains about the meaning of the single title. “A love like this will not succeed. This song is a gesture of boundless love that holds too tight.”
Deep within the mind, body, and soul of Janelle Kroll lives a wide palette of powerful emotions with which she shapes her individually crafted songs. With each defining stroke across her musical canvas, she layers feelings colored with wide sentiments of desire dancing with pain, of reaction and response and of irrational minds and reckless hearts. Hers is a voice unafraid to communicate the profound complexities of life and love in truthful manner: her innermost fears, her sexual freedom, her emotional vulnerability. She tattoos her heart on her sleeves in neon pinks and passionate reds for the world to see and hear. And it’s all laid out on Kroll’s newest project: the Barricade EP, set for release fall 2017 via NYC indie label Lokal Legend.
Barricade displays the Chicago-born, New York-based singer-songwriter in her latest evolution. A sultry romp through R&B sensuality, pop sensibility, indie dreamscapes, and vocal-driven melodies, Barricade sees Kroll defying genre boundaries and artistic expectations with no regard for rules, but her own.
“I think right now is a very exciting time to be genreless and forge your own path,” says Kroll. “Listeners today have more eclectic tastes because of how we’re able to absorb music. As artists, I think we should outwardly present music that is varied.”
For Kroll, her artistic journey lives in her music and comes to life via her songs and lyrics, where she freely explores the definitive themes surrounding her personal life and openly expresses her essential perspectives. Key among those is emotional authenticity, as best heard on the lead single “Barricade,” in which she lays all her heart’s cards on the table. Deceptively sad, as Kroll describes it, “Barricade” is simultaneously a love song and a heartbreak anthem, in which the singer moves through polar extremes of love and unrequited romance, never ashamed of what she feels getting through it all and never leaving listeners brooding in the moment.
Barricade is an appropriate continuation on Kroll’s last release, the Outsider EP, in which she fully explores the realms of dreampop and alternative pop a la contemporaries Banks, AlunaGeorge and Lana Del Rey. Whereas Outsider is more sentimental, Barricade is a few shades brighter, where playful lyrics intertwine with sensual melodies for a sultry treat.
Prior to Outsider and Barricade, Kroll developed her singing and songwriting chops through various creative partnerships including her time singing lead vocals while on tour with indietronica outfit Big Data in the summer of 2014 as well as a co-writing credit with Estelle on “Time Share (Suite 509)” off her 2015 album, True Romance. Kroll first left her mark on the world with her 2015 hit, “Sunny Days,” which was featured on Spotify’s influential New Music Playlist. The track later went Top 10 on the streaming platform’s US Viral Chart and Global Viral Chart. Further backed by ongoing support from tastemaker media outlets like Harper’s Bazaar, Billboard, Pigeons & Planes, and more, Kroll secured a coveted performance slot on internationally celebrated music festival Lollapalooza in her native Chicago in 2015, a special homecoming show of sorts. Elsewhere, Kroll has worked as a featured vocalist on a handful of tracks from buzzing electronic dance music acts, including Moon Boots (“Utopia”) and Autograf (“Metaphysical”), as well as house music veteran Dennis Ferrer on “Mind Your Step,” which dominated radio stations across Europe.
And while Kroll’s cutting lyrics and deep-seated songs come from a very personal space, they reach audiences from all walks of life. Her story unfolds as a solo mission teeming with universal appeal to which she credits to her self-created notion of “dependent music,” a connection with listeners bridged solely by the raw emotions and emotional dependencies we all share as humans.
“Music should help you with your troubles, with what you’re hung up on, and help you find a release,” Kroll explains. “In life, we go through a wide range of experiences, but with a limited range of emotions. I want my music to validate other people’s feelings and help them feel special, whether that’s taking them someplace else or bringing them deeper within themselves.”
With Barricade, Janelle Kroll accomplishes both, taking listeners on a journey that’s part personal and part communal, singular and universal, reality and dream.
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