Premiere: Rod Melancon – “Lights of Carencro”

LA 14 Out April 22 via Blue Élan Records

Apr 14, 2016
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Singer/songwriter Rod Melancon is often called the “Dangerous Cajun,” and with good reason. The LA based, southern-Louisiana native isn’t content to stay in one place sonically, combining a strong singer/songwriter sensibility with “swamp-like, country blend that moves out to the parameters of psychedelic-rock laced through with strains of deep southern blues.” For example, his song “Lights of Carencro” off his new EP LA 14, which we’re premiering today, features Melancon at perhaps his heaviest both sonically and lyrically, especially on this collection of songs.

“Lights of Carencro” is song he wrote from his father’s point of view, and tells the story of the death of his uncle in 1976. It starts with a blistering White Stripes-like rock explosion, before turning into a haunting grind of fierce guitars and psychedelic rock. Melancon sounds like he's speaking to someone through a distorted telephone line, adding an even more bone-chilling element to the song as he recounts the tragedy.

Melancon had the following to say about the song: "I approached the song as if I was writing a monologue. I'm a big fan of southern literature. Larry Brown and Cormac McCarthy are two literary heroes of mine. Brian Whelan wrote the music and I wrote the lyrics. I played a few Black Angels tracks for him and we went from there. The story is inspired by the death of my namesake/uncle and the events that followed. It is told from the perspective of my father."

LA 14, a reference to Louisiana State Highway 14, is Melancon's third release and is just a sample of the adventurous musical exploits of Melancon as a full-length is expected to be released later this year. The album was produced by former Dwight Yoakam guitarist    Brian Whelan, who he had worked with prior. The EP also tackles with characters dealing with addiction, loyalty of a family friend, and finding redemption found in a life-long love. The songs conjure up haunted and hunted swampy, South Louisiana nights.

In May, Melancon will a Residency at LA's Legendary Silverlake Lounge called Manic Mondays. You can also watch the video for his song "Perry" here.


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