With music as rousing as their name, Lunar Vacation takes listeners on a cosmic, yet grounding journey on their new EP, Artificial Flavors.
On the opening track “Daytime”, an enthusiastic male voice in the form of an advertisement exclaims “Junior spacemen with an out of this world flavor and energy, what a treat!” then morphs into the delicate yet assertive voice of Grace Repasky. “If only he would notice me in the daytime,” Repasky desires, landing back to reality. When you discover these voices are those of recent high school graduates, it all clicks. Suddenly you can visualize the lyrics being born from a dark, crowded room where everything is fine, but everything is feigned. Through a 4 song journey, Lunar Vacation takes us through a person’s innermost thought process in a social setting deriving from the cyclical nature of the high school party scene.
“Don’t you ever stop and think that it’s all just meaningless?” – From ”The Basement”
As a self declared “Atlanta Pool Rock” group, their music is compatible with a vast variety of listening scenarios. Picture a scalding hot August day, being tired from the heat but energized by the company around you. The steady paced lyrics succeeding summery guitar solos and catchy piano patterns from Repasky and instrumentalists Maggie Geeslin, Matteo DeLurgio, John Michael Young, and Connor Dowd assemble this scene.
Photography by Elissa Grady
On the contrary, it’s music you can listen to when you’re sitting alone in your bedroom, awake late at night. Lyrically and audibly, the songs embody the feeling of still being up when the sun begins to rise, causing you to ponder both yourself and the life you are living. The album art emulates this aura of Artificial Flavors flawlessly. It is light and dark blended, it’s late nights and early mornings, it’s pops of vitality distracting from the dark foundation.
Coinciding with the name “Artificial Flavors”, Lunar Vacation explores the superficiality of their frequent encounters. Repasky is jaded by the repetition of the places she goes and the situations she endures, creating an incessant theme of tiredness and reflection that reverberates throughout the tracks. However, she continues to attend these redundant events. Through this, she is thoroughly self aware stating both:
“I really want to go home,”
“See you next weekend”
in “The Basement”. In “Daytime”, the singer notes “Everything we say is so introductory,” craving conversation brimful with depth and meaning. Although things may be attractive on a surface level, Repasky realizes that they simply lack substance.
This contemplative attitude carries on in “Slowdown”, where the singer is faced with confusion due to the actions of another person, shrugging “Don’t know what else to do,” a feeling we are all familiar with. In the slowed down swing of “Too Late, Colin”, Repasky states “It’s always the same story,” discussing what she describes as a “Colossal waste of time”. Artificial Flavors relays an excursion through both dreams and realism, prompting an awakening from all the insincerity of life.
Lunar Vacation leaves the listeners realizing that they want more, even if they do not know what that “more” entails.