Indie-electronic artist Stephen drops his sophomore album Akrasia. The Los Angeles based musician delivers an emotional purge in the new 11-track release, opening up about his own personal battles with life’s many hurdles, including love, loss, addiction, recovery and ultimately the journey to discovering one’s self-identity.
Akrasia is Stephen's first full-length album release since his life-altering diagnosis of Lyme disease. The illness allowed the artist to re-evaluate his life, giving him a different outlook of his journey so far and the road ahead and essentially infusing his music with depth and poignancy.
The album is aptly named after the Greek word meaning, "the state of mind in which someone acts against their better judgment through weakness of will."
A standout track on the release is "I Never Stay In Love." A stunning admittance of the songwriter's dissolution of love and lack of expectations for relationships. Stephen confides, "I've found in my own life, with certain compulsions for distraction and addictive tendencies - the things that leave me wanting more are generally destructive. I'm using whatever reward it's giving me as an escape from a problem, to relinquish responsibility or not have to deal with something - be it ourselves or a situation or circumstance." Cinematic piano arrangements, distorted synths and an impressive vocal range result in a heartfelt, passionate release, oozing with emotion.
Then there is "Stray Nights" - a song with dual meaning, it speaks about the fantasy and excitement of being in love, but also talks about breathing, meditating and being present. Stephen admits, "This connects back to the shadow and temptations. Because when I am meditating regularly, when I have a practice of coming home, the urge to rebel and seek artificial ecstasy feels so undesirable. Meditation is my sword and shield." Featuring quirky soundscapes, layered textures and additional female vocals, "Stray Nights" is the perfect track for long, nighttime drives.
"Idiot" delves into Stephen's struggles with drugs and sex and how they become a recipe for self-sabotage. His honest, storytelling lyrics give audiences an insight into some of his most vulnerable moments.
Stephen has created a unique body of work, unlike anything you've heard before. Relatable themes result in giving listeners something they can really sink their teeth into, acting as a soundtrack for the extraordinary times we live in.