Grumpy Kitty Boy looks inward with his reflective new single and video Blue Eyes — showcasing today on Tinnitist.
The latest release from award-nominated Toronto artist Juro Kim Feliz’s synth-pop alter ego, Blue Eyes personifies the plight of people who need to let go of the past, live in the present, and look after themselves. The protagonist of the song feels lost, singing about things that “don’t make sense,” Feliz explains. “He seems to suffer from amnesia while living in his Unwanted adoption box, and sings about things like the night sky, Zodiac signs, shattered TV screens, horizon lines … He’d rather avoid past lives that now take over his destiny.
“The chorus of Blue Eyes came together in my mind while waiting for a bus on a winter day,” Feliz says. “The exhausting routine of taking 1.5 hour-long commutes to work freezes one’s perception of time and space. You lose control of things as others take the wheel — for better or worse. There’s a parallel in the present day as the world continually faces the ongoing pandemic. Many of us have probably resigned ourselves into realities in which we feel stuck. Unlike Grumpy Kitty Boy though, I tried taking matters into my own hands instead of losing myself … Those imposing Blue Eyes keep staring back, though, as if they know something I still don’t.”
The release is a striking preview to Grumpy Kitty Boy’s forthcoming debut EP Show Me The Kibbles, set to land Feb. 26. While many artists boldly define themselvies in a breakthrough release, Feliz notes has made a U-turn instead. “Grumpy Kitty Boy’s fictional universe exposes this resignation towards an identity crisis, disguised as amnesia with a dramatic flair,” he adds. “All ego set aside, we now ask, ‘Who is he anyway?’ Maybe — just maybe — he could have been you, me, or anyone else stuck in the past who fears facing the future that stares back at them. Everyone has an inner ‘grumpy’ in them who lost one’s sense of self at a point in time.”
Blue Eyes and Show Me The Kibbles continue exploring themes Feliz has been artfully reckoning with for some time. “Switching gears in life is a tough choice to make,” he confides. “Arriving in Montreal from Manila as a student in December of 2013, the struggle to feel secure and find a place to call home became a recurring theme for me throughout the years.” A pianist and keyboardist, Feliz soon honed in on songwriting as his sonic vehicle of choice. “It’s the most appropriate channel to express my world view,” he muses. “I figure: Be authentic! Embrace the grumpy!”
Harnessing the pull towards video game music and inspirations from The Midnight, Radiohead, Porcupine Tree, Sufjan Stevens and Owl City’s synth-pop sound, Feliz started producing instrumental tracks in lieu of forming a band. “That process caters well to my composer instincts,” he shares. “This is an opportunity to express the ‘grumpy life’ through an alter-ego’s fictional eyes. Through this, I can tell stories and be in touch with real, deep feelings about reality that’s often left ignored and suppressed in people’s conception of emanating positivity in life.”