Photos and words by Ben Irwin
We’ve been touting the virtuoso that is Rachel Fannan for about 5 years now. We’ve been telling anyone who will listen that she’s a unique talent, the type which only comes around a handful of times in a generation. Now we get our first taste of what she, Brandon Intelligator, and a band of some of LA’s finest musicians have been working on over the last year with her band Only You; spoiler alert, it’s ground shaking. We love being right.
Only You’s psychedelic anthem Pressure has the potential to completely upend a genre that’s been consistently evolving for over 50 years. Think of that ancient fish that eventually walked out of the water and started breathing air, and you might grasp how this could change what we think of Psych. Along with Intelligator and company, Fannan figures out how to fuse the oil and water combination of Soul and Psychedelic. The result feels like you’re like you’re basking in the pleasant warmth of a well-managed fire, with the full knowledge that it’s surrounded by murderess apparitions. The production decision to leave Fannan’s world-class vocals in the unruly ether brings a new level of complexity to a song that was already amongst my favorites from the live shows over the past year.
As a testament to Only You’s depth, the second single Let Me Burn introduces Intelligator’s work on lap steel in order to set a mood that’s one handful good ol’ country and one handful golden age of radio soul. With Fannan’s vocals unleashed to take center stage this second track derives its depth from her vocal range. Like true love gone backwards Let Me Burn builds steam only to decisively shatter apart revealing the raw nerves of the artist. With the emotional cupboard empty it’s easy for the listener to place themselves into the role of the songs protagonist.
In a musical age where the ease of distribution has muddied the waters to the point where even special talent is no assurance of success it’s rare to be able to gaze upon a talent so extraordinary that it can only be classified as undeniable.
ONLY YOU’S “THE PRESSURE” B/W “LET IT BURN” IS AVAILABLE NOW FROM HIT CITY U.S.A.