Home Hear Kevin Rumley Finds Strength in Numbers With VI

Kevin Rumley Finds Strength in Numbers With VI

The veteran translates emotions into psychedelic soundscapes on his debut album.

Kevin Rumley harnesses the miraculous healing power of music with his new psychedelic EP VI — showcasing today on Tinnitist.

The very existence of VI is something of a miracle in itself, given that Rumley is lucky even to be alive. On April 7, 2004, while serving in the U.S. Marines on the Syrian border, an IED tore through his body and killed his closest friends. Using the restorative power of song, Kevin honours this momentous event and his subsequent recovery with his debut EP. Released on the 20th anniversary of his life-changing mishap, this psychedelic indie-rock release marks a pivotal moment in his journey.

With each of the six tracks on VI, Rumley invites you to join him on a cathartic exploration of triumph over tragedy, weaving together elements of indie-rock, folk, and orchestral choirs to create a sound uniquely his own. From the airy rock opener Turn The Lights to the spacious closer For Clifford, VI takes you on an emotionally charged trip through his sonic worlds.

Rumley doesn’t produce songs so much as musical snapshots of feelings. They manifest themselves in the luscious sonic landscapes of his work, and this EP is the first glimpse into his internal universe. After being gifted a Mellotron by Drop Of Sun studio owner Adam McDaniel, Rumley’s sound was transported to a new realm. Boldly fusing classic, acoustic instrumentation with sweeping synths and engrossing textures, his life story is weaved into the tapestry of VI.

“My life, at the time, was in a state of great motion and change,” Rumley says. “VI was my reflective space. My attempt at making sense of life and love and loss. I partnered with many local musicians, my absolute heroes, to have these melodic feelings released. I don’t call them songs, so much as feelings or emotional landscapes. I had around 200 recordings; these are just the six that I chose to release for their cohesive energy.”

Based in the mountains of North Carolina, Rumley has been making music his whole life. He started out recording songs with his brother and lifelong collaborator Matt. Their psychedelic rock outfit Her Marigold has been producing their signature cathartic, expansive sound since middle school. As a drummer, Rumley works with artists all over North Carolina, including Band of HorsesTyler Ramsey, Bandazian, Wildebeest and Electric Owls. His unique sound is a testament to his years of collaboration, experimentation, and performing.

Rumley unites his musical exploration with his work as a veteran counsellor and mentor. He has set out to help those struggling with rehabilitating from the forces, bringing his connection with musical healing with him. Citing music as the foundation of his community, his artistry has helped him to connect to others throughout his recovery journey.

“Music is everything,” he says. “Seldom has music not been the connecting fabric between myself and veterans. Music can instantly calm the nervous system and allow for ventral vagal grounding. Music allows humans who are traumatised to access their neofrontal cortex. Music therapy is an evidence-based modality. My music making it into the VA Hospitals Ketamine Therapy playlist for PTSD is one of my greatest honours.”

Listen to VI below and get more information on Kevin Rumley’s website, Instagram and Facebook.