‘Letters To A Friend, From Interstate’, the emotionally charged debut album from Naarm/Melbourne based outfit Gypsy Road, dropped on Friday, May 24. This heavy, Midwest-emo, post-punk project navigates relatable topics to most melancholy Melbournian youth, including watching TikToks, breakups, smoking weed, and drinking beer.

Showing off their incredibly emotive instrumentation and vocal capabilities alongside their clear knack for relatable songwriting, Gypsy Road began writing their debut album after their short break in 2021, recording in the Dandenong ranges at Studio DELOS with Beau Mckee.

Offering up an eight-track sonic journey highlighting the emotional struggles the band faces throughout the whole project, ‘James Boag Draught’ marked the beginning of the albums rollout late last year, followed by ‘The 7 Stages Of Grief’ with its release in February , and most recently releasing the album title track ‘Letters To A Friend, From Interstate’.

Opening the album is the track ‘Sky High’, an upbeat, fast paced track despite its heartbreaking lyrical content, detailing the story of a friend moving interstate and loneliness. A rush of distorted guitars riffing up and down the fretboard, raspy, dynamic vocals, and drums like a punch in the face, hitting almost as hard as the raw, emotion-packed lyrics set the scene for the rest of the album.

Next, the intro to lead single ‘The 7 Stages Of Greif’ fills the listener with suspense, anchored by a pattern-picked, hopeful guitar melody, followed by waves of roaring vocals. This track conveys waves of emotion and desperate plea, mourning an intense breakup.

Beginning with a quick-building intro, steadily taking the listener from 0-100 in a climactic 40 seconds, the first chorus of ‘What I Know’ is shortly followed by a very contextual bong rip.

“This one is about not being able to trust people in my life.. and smoking weed,” as front man Alex Centofanti describes.

Flaunting the real, raw nature of Gypsy Road, they show that nothing is off the table when it comes to being authentic to their audience. The track continues with soft, acoustic guitar, again quickly building to an instrumental climax filled with massive guitar layers and stacked vocals, transparently expressing their feelings to listeners.

The title track ‘Letters To A Friend, From Interstate’ smashes the ears with dazzling, yet brooding guitar, a forceful punch from the drums, and Alex’s heart-wrenching screams, altogether evocative of nearing a breakdown. The emotional track reflects on wanting to see an ex, but knowing distance is the proper way to heal and grow.

‘James Boags Draught’ rolls in next, clearly describing what the song entails with the all too familiar title. Driven by the smashing drums and passionately strummed guitars, ‘James Boags Draught’ brings a more hopeful note to the album, ending in the laughs of band members.

Roaring with feedback straight from the start, ‘Honestly, This Gave Me PTSD’ comes screaming with the heaviest vocals yet. Alex’s densely layered, guttural yells, heavily distorted guitar, hard-hitting drums, and lyrics describing anger and thoughts of running away, all combine to create a wall of hefty emotions.

This is closely followed up with Alex’s raspy shouts over a tappy acoustic guitar, contrasting in a way that only enhances the urgency in his incredibly emotive voice on ‘L’antipasto è buono, la pizza ancora di più!’. Continuing the optimistic stint of the album, this track hopes for new beginnings and a promising future.

Closing the rollercoaster of intense emotion is ‘Catch22’ which suitably wraps up a story of depression and relationship struggles. A slower, more concluding guitar riff plays throughout this song, acting as a closing track you would see at the end of a coming-of-age movie, perfectly summarising the ups and downs of the album. The ‘woahs’ at the end of the track reverberate as the piercing strums of distortion from the electric guitar ring out, closing up the 8 song masterpiece called ‘Letters To A Friend, From Interstate’.

This project undoubtably marks listeners hearts with its jam-packed emotional crescendos and mellow moments, conveying raw feelings through its loud, forceful layers. The powerful songwriting and skillfully produced instrumentation race the listener through a roller coaster of Gypsy Road’s struggles, making a huge impact for the band.

Featured image by Harrison Innes.

SOURCE: Official Bio