Around mid-October is when you can really feel the seasons change: Pumpkins replace watermelons. Boots come out. Bikinis get put away. Tights cover tan lines. It’s time to give summer one last open mouth kiss to say goodbye because it’s time to welcome Fall into our scratchy, wool-covered arms with the latest EP from Active Child, Rapor.
Active Child is the solo project of Pat Grossi. Before he was even a teenager, his voice took him around the world performing in big-deal venues like Carnegie Hall and the Sydney Opera House as a member of the Philadelphia Boys Choir. In his teens, he took a break from focusing on music to do normal people things like play sports, go to high school, and listen to a lot of early ’90s gangster rap because the future Active Child’s dad, Bob Grossi, was a sales executive for Priority Records who had acts like N.W.A. and Ice Cube on their roster. It wasn’t until Pat’s college years in Colorado when the local arts scene influenced him to pick up his guitar and his harp. Long story short, we have a sound that’s ethereal but with a synth heavy, beat-driven backbone that may sound alienating, but is as friendly as a handsome ginger playing the harp.
For someone who went from a serious choir boy to being surrounded by gangster rap and R&B (he’s mentioned Jodeci and Genuwine in interviews as some of his favorites), then it becomes not as surprising to realize how Pat Grossi became Active Child. It’s pleasantly calculated and features a vocal range that spans the continuum of hurt and confused to falsetto and breathtaking. Active Child will find that one puzzle piece in our soul that allows you to feel vulnerable, link with it, and not let go because the tenor on these tracks sound like someone who is dealing with grief so it’s easy for you to go there with them. Although on Rapor, when feelings do come forth there’s also lush instrumentation surrounding it to give comfort.
Basically: It’s magical. If unicorns had feelings and a disco to go to, they would listen to this while they flip their rainbow manes around and wonder about their exes between visits to the bar to do glitter bombs.