EP Review: Madison Deaver – Tongue Tied

Tongue Tied is debut EP from LA-based alternative rock artist Madison Deaver. Drawing influences from turn-of-the-century pop punk artists like Avril Lavigne and Gwen Stefani, it’s chock full of big pop rock energy.

By Graeme Smith

Opening track Entertained sets the tone for the EP, a triumphant opener with an undercurrent of big f*ck you energy which showcases Madison’s powerful vocal range and her knack for delivering a memorable melody.

The EP progresses into Conscience which leans more towards the punk end of the pop-punk spectrum yet with a little nod to classic rock and roll as well. There’s another big, hooky chorus and great use of rise and fall.

The EP’s halfway point is its lead single That’s What She Said. A counterfoil to Conscience, it’s more pop than punk and it certainly feels radio friendly. There’s a rocky chorus where electric guitar riffs drop like a ton of bricks while Madison’s delivery is passionate and expressive.

Madison worked with a few producers to create Tongue TiedEntertained and That’s What She Said were female led, co-written and produced by LA-based Una Jensen. Conscience and track four Fire with Fire were produced a little closer to home – by Nottingham-based producers Natt Webb of RatCat Studios and Adam Slack from The Struts. The latter sees Madison’s sound venture into pop-ska, and the Gwen Stefani influences become clearer.

The EP ends with a ballad, Villain. The big rock energy is put to one side, letting Madison’s vocals and song writing do the talking. I was a little reminded of one of my favourite discoveries of the past few years, Madison Beer due to its rich, soulful composition and beautiful vocals. It’s a strong closer to an EP that showcases a range of styles while still having a strong sense of voice.

Fans of pop rock, old and young, will find a lot to like in Tongue Tied. It’s five tracks of well-constructed music with attitude and heart. Madison Deaver is certainly a name to keep your eye out for in the pop world. There’s certainly more to come from her.

Check out Tongue Tied below.