When the demon’s gone, I can somehow press on, Florida’s Rob Alexander sings in the new single “Olivia”. Armed with a voice for the ages and a backing band that has their ‘A’ game intact, this new pop/adult contemporary song is refreshingly honest and jumping with optimism. Despite the idea that love is lost, Alexander evokes that it really never goes away. Touching the listener’s own heart with his talents and a voice that charms the buttons off any cynic, “Olivia” is from Alexander’s third album release, Dream Out Loud.
Alexander is singing about the emotional roller coaster that is love, and while his audience may not know this particular Olivia at the beginning of the song, by the song’s end, I felt like I did. He makes her real, mostly because it’s very relatable. You sort of fall in love with her, too, because he did. Alexander’s song communicates that winding road (in fact in the song, he actually calls it “like the winding of a never-ending road”) of relationships. Whereas Olivia has tattooed herself to Alexander’s psyche and soul, their story continues in this song.
The backing music is stellar. Alexander, who enlisted band members from Sir Elton John’s band, rocks the rhythm from start to finish. “Olivia” moves with purpose, but more so, grooves with a natural flow and almost improvisation. It doesn’t sound stale or rehearsed. It’s a natural fit happening between the drums, drooling bass, organ/keys and electric guitar. If you’re a fan of the sounds of the 80s Elton John, you will get into this groove easily. Alexander casts a wide sound that includes the “I’m Still Standing” colors and brings them into that beachy-sunny Florida ecosystem. From there, Alexander keeps the listener in his orbit with his slightly raspy vocals and front man ways. He’s a rock star meets piano bar singer, giving the best of both worlds to his audience. I don’t want to take away from his artistry, but he does have a very commercial sounding voice. That’s not a bad thing – believe me. Singers like Michael Bublé, Brendon Urie (Panic! At The Disco) and George Michael have commercial sounding voices – I’d put Alexander up against any of these guys. He’s authentic and you can tell he’s giving it his all.
“Olivia” drives the listener to want to dance, to clap along to the melodies. It’s both a sweet escape and surreal, jazzy selection. Alexander dives a bit deeper below the surface with these lyrics. You want to hear more, and you want to know how this song ends. Somehow, though, you again know that it’s really never going to end because why else would he put this to song. I’m glad he did and you should too – “Olivia” is worth the dance, worth the listen and keeps the rhythm of love moving along, albeit a steady river. “Olivia” is a standout in a very crowded, indie release season. Be sure to push this one to the top tracks on your Spotify playlist.