Since the first time he heard his grandfather play the Chuck Berry classic “Johnny B. Goode” on his ’97 red Fender Stratocaster, Kansas City based singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Colton Cox has had an enduring love of music, especially from the golden years of Rock n’ Roll.
Drawing inspiration from classic artists like The Beatles and Bob Dylan, Cox likes to fuse the older sounds of the 60s and 70s with modern sensibilities, creating striking new material from familiar territory.
Internal Combustion is Cox’s groovy, rockin’, soulful debut as a solo artist. The album will be released on July 24th. Darting between psychedelic rock, funk, and alternative R&B, Cox weaves surreal tales of self-examination, anxiety, and heartbreak into melodious earworms that will pull you in and hook you from the first listen.
You can follow Cox on your streaming platform of choice here.
What are your favorite memories of writing or recording the album?
“My favorite memory from the recording of Internal Combustion was in the process of recording the background vocals for ‘Beautiful Lie’. We had finished recording for the day at Red Cat Recording, and I was about 20 minutes down the road, returning to Kansas City to go back to work. As I was driving, an additional vocal harmony line that I had not thought of before popped into my head, and I immediately turned around and returned to the studio to lay it down. I ended up being late for work, but the harmony really fleshed out the ending of the piece, so no regrets.”
What does the album’s title reveal?
“When I first came up with the name Internal Combustion, I had meant to use it as an expression of that moment in time when an artist has a figurative “explosion” of productivity, where it seems the creative juices flow with no restriction. That was how I felt about my own output when I first began writing the record. However, the longer COVID quarantine stretched on, and the further away live performances seemed to grow, I came to associate it more with this anxious itch, where those overabundant artistic impulses were kept locked in my mind, frantically searching for a way to escape into the light of day. It felt very much like having fire shooting through your body, but you’re stuck in place, forced to stand in one spot while you slowly burn away. Thankfully, things are getting better now, but there have certainly been many moments where it felt like I might never get these songs out in front of people.”
What are you hoping to achieve with this release?
“This is my very first EP release as a solo artist, so of course, I want to get my music out in front of as many people as possible, and start touring again. I have been playing and writing music since I was 14 years old, and I’ve played in several bands throughout my 20s, but I only just now feel like I’ve really come into my own as a musician and songwriter. My goal is that a year from now, I’ll have claimed my own little spot in the music world at large. I have a lot of big plans for what comes next, and Internal Combustion is really just the starting point.”