I have said many times before that truth, originality and authenticity are the corner stone of any great art form. The arts have a tendency to expose the insincere and the charlatans. The public knows when an artist is real and when they are putting on a front. An indie artist emerging from the heartland of the US has struggled with identity and has emerged at a place of truth that is evident in the music itself. Devin James Miclette was an adopted child at 4 and for years endured issues relating to what is termed non binary gender. Devin who now goes by the moniker Ivory Black seems to have come to terms with their gender identity issues and trust issues and has emerged as an original voice on the music scene.
Ivory Black has released a new EP called "Ready Get Set" that is sure to appear on a lot of critics' "best" list at the end of the year. The record is real, original and screams of authenticity. This young "person" has accepted themselves for who they are and writes about it in ways that are not "in your face" but more subtle and passionate than this reviewer has heard in quite a while. All too often, another component, in music at least, is adversity. Artists tend to use life's hard knocks to mold their art not only for their purposes but also for the benefit of their audiences. Art and particularly music can be a tremendously healing exercise and Ivory Black has channeled his adversity into songs that no doubt will help him and hopefully others.
The songs are intelligently well written and the arrangements are reminiscent of a Midwestern modern version of Nickelback or Three Doors Down. The EP only contains five songs but based on what we hear so far, we can't wait to hear more from this exceptionally talented artist.
Uncle Duke; a.k.a. Rob Penland is the producer and host of "The Mad Music Asylum" a 4 hour weekly syndicated radio show and now a 24 hour streaming internet station.