Here’s a name you probably are, understandably, unfamiliar with: Joe Girard. Among being a best-selling author, Joe Girard is an American car salesman who was recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the seller of the most cars in a year, selling 1,425 cars in 1973. As a testament to his hard work, he was once quoted as saying that "The elevator to success is out of order. You'll have to use the stairs… one step at a time.“
The steady incline to the door at the top of the staircase of success is as exhausting as it is compelling when you know that behind all your hard work lies the freedom of a bright blue sky. But what happens when you’ve put in the extensive work to climb to the top of a staircase that doesn’t even have roof access?
Kyle Lux employs a personal perspective to this allegory in his debut EP No Roof Access. The nineteen-year-old South Carolina native places listeners in the interior of his subconscious. Lux spoke further on his debut project, sharing,
"This project confronts a subconscious dialogue that's been going on in my head for some time now. It acknowledges my insecurities, then releases them. It's honest and you might question my sanity in certain moments - I did too. Now that it's said and done, I'm just excited for everyone to experience what I felt."
From the very opening moment of "Precedent” to the very last note of the EP's closing and title track, Lux delivers a lachrymose project offering insight into an internalized emotional battlefield raging within him. The power behind his soulful voice fails to falter throughout the progression of the EP, and, in his voice, you can almost hear all of the gospel songs he’d sing in his childhood church’s choir.
There’s a smooth jazz ambiance underlining each track, giving the project an inimitable live quality, as if you’re sitting in a speakeasy watching the entire affair play out before your eyes. If you gather a caged-bird sentiment from the No Roof Access, you’re on the right track. Lux shared on his writing process, sharing
“I've always related the action of being in love to flying, a feeling of weightlessness. I've never been in love before, but there's been times where I tried to convince myself that I was, and realizing that put me in a hollow place. I visualized that place being a stairwell. Stairwells with no roof access don't have locked doors that keep you from going up, the door just simply isn't there. There's nowhere higher to go, no sky to see, no chance of flying. This EP is my perspective from feeling like I'm inside one of those stairwells.”
Finding inspiration in powerful creators like Solange, Gabriel Garzon-Montano, Frank Ocean, and James Blake, Lux is re-inventing Gospel music. It is a sonic phenomenon best described in Lux's own words, “autumn transitioning to winter.”
Listen to No Roof Access below: