Written by Maria Arroyo
The rock ‘n roll band, PVRIS, share their stunning new full-length record, Use Me, out now via Warner Records. On Use Me, the trio sings about various different topics from fighting through everything from a serious long-term relationship, fixing Lynn Gunn‘s support system, autoimmune diseases, as well as finding themselves in the music industry, Gunn is able to “transfer the pain and power into the next chapter of PVRIS on Use Me.”
Helping Gunn bring her vision to life is her collaborator JT Daly (K. Flay). “He could bring the aggression out,” she shares. “A lot of the resentment and pressure bottles up, but he helped me translate it into the music. We’ve always tried to make catchy pop songs and mask them with impactful production. We just found a new lens for PVRIS together.”
The first track on the record, “Gimme A Minute,” is an alt-pop and angst-filled song. Her beat drops in certain parts are similar to those of Billie Eilish, which have become super popular lately. Her music has a dirtier sound, a raw aspect to it, that doesn’t feel forced, and is overall very well done. “Dead Weight” and its bringing to life are only explained best by the singer herself.
“The day before the session, I got a psychic reading,” Gunn says. “My psychic has been spot-on every year in the past. This time, she was like, ‘Get in your power seat. Take credit for what you’re doing. Step up. It’s time.’ She recognized how much I try to give and take care of everyone around me. She was right. I had to shed my old skin and step into this new and empowered light.” The song is very catchy with an infectious rhythm.
“Good To Be Alive” has a softer introduction that is paired with these beautifully crafted vocals. Her lyric “Feelin like a shark, if I stop I die,” really resonates with me, as someone who feels the need to constantly be moving, even if I should take a break. I think there are tons of people out there that can resonate with that same concept too. While this can be broadened to a lot of people, Gunn says this song specifically speaks to her autoimmune disease. “I’ve done a lot of inner work on myself emotionally and physically, and I’m finally in a place where I feel like life is cool. It’s stressful, but it’s not do-or-die anymore. It feels good to be alive, yet I hate being sick. So, I crack jokes about it. It’s something I’ve never shown people in my songs.”
Breathing new life for the album among other things is the track “Old Wounds.” Gunn is able to create new and unique spin-offs of overused cliches, and as a songwriter, it’s a brilliant tactic! Her vocal performance is amazing. She has such ease within her registers and is able to add tons of color that compliment the instrumentation underneath.
“Loveless” is a more intimate song, but it pulls back even more layers to Gunn as an artist. It’s extremely heart-opening and vulnerable, and I loved every second of it. We get to uncover more about her as a singer/songwriter, but also as a person.
“January Rain” has a great feel to it, and overall it was a very pleasant song to play. It’s the perfect combination of laid-back and interesting.
The title track of the album “Use Me” (feat. 071 Shake) is another unbelievable listen with a good mix of soft and more intense moments. “The title encapsulates the entire experience,” she explains. “I was exhausted, and I felt like shit all of the time. For so long, I’d opened myself up to being used and always had trouble setting boundaries in all areas of life. It made me actualize my strength, resiliency, and toughness. I turned the hardships into lessons. It was about taking action.”
Gunn highlights her incredible ability to construct such beautifully crafted songs. The last track off the record is “Wish You Well” with so much depth and color to it. There’s so much to discover with this song, and her creativity really brings this song to life, more specifically in the lyrics. The song is a perfect sendoff because it really combines all of the amazing aspects of the album into one cohesive track.
I could listen to her music all day, and listen to the intensity that she delivers in her vocals forever. The darker sound that she creates is actually quite refreshing because she really taps into the emotions that drive her sound. It can be hard to bring those demons to the surface, but she does it so eloquently. “When you hear this, I’d love for you to understand where I was and what I was going through,” she says. “For as tough as it was, I’m stronger than ever—I’ve always been, but I’m finally embracing it. If you get anything from it, I hope it’s strength.”
“I’ve tapped into parts of myself I had shrunk for so long… They’re the parts I was afraid to show and things I was scared to admit. I made a decision not to shrink myself again and to truly be seen for the first time in my art. I was finally able to take ownership of the things I’ve done and continue to do as PVRIS. It was a new era for me.”
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