Alex Maher keeps hope alive and kicking on his upbeat new EP Dream Final — premiering exclusively today on Tinnitist.
The Vancouver singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist’s third release finds him confronting a serious slate of social, economic, political and environmental concerns. But instead of giving into cynicism, his thoughtful lyrics bring a much-needed dose of optimism to the discussion — while the contagiously funky beats and jazzy pop grooves put his thoughts into action.
“Capitalistic greed, our climate crisis, political division, injustice — that’s where my head’s at,” acknowledges Maher. “But at the same time, no one wants to be preached to. We get enough gloom and doom in the news.” As a result, he says, his songwriting evolved during the creation of Dream Final. “Rather than despair, I want people to feel uplifted and hopeful while they’re listening. Change is possible.”
Case in point: The five-track set’s title cut. “Dream Final is about the struggle getting really real. In this era of climate crisis, increased nationalism, and social alienation, it’s about reimagining your best case scenario to find hope. Faced with all these signs pointing towards the end times, it can feel like all the hustle, all the career dreams are just a product of the greed that’s simultaneously destroying our planet and the ways we relate to each other. This song is about taking a step back from the drive for more to take clear stock of we have. It’s about shifting focus and letting go of what you thought your end goal was to be open to a different, but similarly rewarding path.”
Maher’s singular, trail-blazing path begin in the world of jazz. After playing in bands like Flannel Jimmy and DNA6, he began experimenting with the Line 6 loop pedal in his solo work. Now, using percussion, SPDS drum pad, electric guitar, sax and vocals, Alex creates songs one layer at a time.
His 2017 EP Aether marked the end of a struggle with addiction stemming from mental illness after the loss of a dear friend. Dream Final expands from Aether’s introspection with its macro take on global issues in the digital age. Featuring crisp production by Juno Award-winning producer Ryan Stewart, Dream Final is an up-tempo meditation on the state of the world.