“Mystifacts” by Joe Kowalski, Album Review

MystifactsMystifacts is the latest album from Ohio native Joe Kowalski, also known as PogieJoe. He primarily works as the director and writer for his films and YouTube videos, but has truly made his mark in the music world with this album. There’s a lot on Mystifacts that Kowalski does by himself with the tools at his disposal, from the composition right down to the vocals. With the help of a few friends, Kowalski has created a spectacular, original album that mesmerizes and delights the listener from start to finish.

One of the first things that you notice is the originality of Mystifacts. There’s not an unoriginal note anywhere on this album, and each song is a unique experience all of its own. Given that this album was not made in a studio or anything similar, it is the tiniest bit rough around the edges. But it’s hardly noticeable in comparison to all of the great stuff on the album.

The lyrics are one of the most intriguing things about the album. In addition for telling stories and having an overall message to send, they literally make up the song. For example, the melody in “Winter” is softer, but still somewhat upbeat. But the thing that makes the song so bittersweet and entertaining is the lyrics. In a similar way, the lyrics to “Pizza Bank” are really humorous – but the melody itself might not come across that way if it weren’t for the lyrics.

One of the songs that stands out the most is “Word Streams” The concept behind it is so unique, it almost goes over your head on the first listen through. He takes the clips of a bunch of people saying the words that meant the most to them and then runs them through a loop, layering them so they create literal word streams. Each time you listen to it, you can find something new.

Aside from the lyrics, the instrumentals are really amazing as well. There’s a nice flow from one song to the next, so you feel like you’re listening to a complete piece instead of just a string of singles. But even more amazing than that is the way that Kowalski mixed and produced them. Just the smallest of things – such as the effect on the vocals in “Lil Ol’ Tree” – make the biggest difference to the songs.

There is never a dull moment in Mystifacts. Every second is filled with something worth paying attention to or taking note of. Whether it’s a guitar chord, the way a lyric is sung, or just the melody in the song; it commands your attention, it demands to be noticed. Not only that, but it’s so creative, unique, and entertaining that you genuinely enjoy every second of it. Definitely an album worth checking out at least once.

You can listen to Mystifacts on Bandcamp. You can also see more of from PogieJoe on his YouTube Channel and Website.

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