At first glance, Marcio Novelli’s The Reimagining, Vol. 1 seems simple enough: seven tracks from across the celebrated pop rock artist’s discography, reimagined in acoustic form. But don’t be fooled – this EP is much more than just a collection of bare-bones renditions with an acoustic guitar. Novelli has breathed new life into the songs, pulling back the blazing electric guitars and pounding drums of their original arrangements to reveal the intimacy and melancholy that lays beneath. Once the songs were stripped down, they were built back up piece by piece, from the tiniest of delicate flourishes to entirely new parts. As he does on all of his releases, Novelli wrote every song and performed every instrument, even embracing the challenge of arranging a string trio on each track for the first time. And as his musical journey over the years has taken him from solo acoustic performances to an expansive full band sound, this EP sees him embracing his roots while reinvigorating his back catalogue. It’s a nod to the past while looking steadily forward.
With Novelli set to embark on a new chapter later this year with the release of his sophomore full-length, this self-produced EP is a heartfelt sendoff to everything that’s brought him here. The more exuberant cuts from his debut full-length It’s Not An Excuse, It’s A Reason – co-produced by Jim Wirt (Incubus, Jack’s Mannequin) and winner of an Independent Music Award for its accompanying studio documentary Walking Proof – take on an entirely new character on this EP, flipping the script on the original recordings’ juxtaposition of upbeat music and dark lyrics to unveil the emotional heart of the songs. Meanwhile, older listeners will recognize favourite tunes from his early EP’s, the self-produced The Overture as well as Break Me – co-produced by Julius “Juice” Butty (City & Colour, Alexisonfire) – a tip of the hat to the loyal fanbase who have carried Novelli through his years in music, many of whom have the words of those early songs tattooed on their skin.
The EP serves as the perfect bridge between Excuse and the upcoming sophomore record, which has him teaming back up with Wirt for another ambitious full-band release. And it’s clear that listeners are hungry for new music – the album’s PledgeMusic crowdfunding campaign hit 100% in just three days. But hey, why wait? The Reimagining, Vol. 1 is both a celebration of where Novelli has been and a taste of where he’s going next – as well as a reminder that wherever that road takes him, passionate and emotionally honest music will always be the destination.