Enthusiasm is catching and when Keys & Corridors takes the stage, it is impossible not to get caught up in the excitement. Kaylene Widdoes (vocals), Lauren Seveney (rhythm guitar/vocals), Nate Milstein (lead guitar), Kyle Miner (bass), and Austin Melaney (drums) start their show with an invitation to come and party with them, and they consistently bring music tailor-made for a good time.
What kind of music is it? Google lists Keys & Corridors as an alternative rock band, but that is incorrect. Widdoes has a distinct punk voice with the right amount of angst and anger, balanced with enchanting melodies that reach out and draw the listener in. Lead guitar fluctuates between hard-driving punk to classic rock beats, with an underlying blues influence, creating a sound all their own. Seveney provides a perfect guitar rhythm, giving the music a fullness and depth, while her vocals complement and contrast Widdoes leads. The youngest member of Keys & Corridors, Miner keeps the bass lines tight and also sings, adding yet another dimension. Precise timing on drums by Melaney keeps the music on track and his innovative fills throughout are fascinating. They have played with top-rated post/hardcore metal bands, traditional punk groups, and pop shows. Since the alternative label does not fit, I would consider Keys & Corridors a real life/rock genre.
Interpretation lies with the individual. Not only is the music spot-on, the lyrics weave musical tales all about our lives. Indeed, each song I heard could have been describing an event in my own life. The song, “Thieves” resonates with fans, but for different reasons. Lyrics say, “And in a moment of clarity/You’ll see us the way we were meant to be/We opened the box that we stole from Pandora’s own hands/It’s time to accept the consequences.” In an unscientific survey, three attendees at the show gave their opinion on the meaning of this song. Dylan, from Westlake, thought it was about stealing the hearts of girls everywhere. Maida, from Chagrin Falls, thought it described being young and going where you are not supposed to go. L.J., from Cleveland, was sure the song told a story of best friends just having fun. And they are all right, because when an individual finds meaning in music, the connection is made.
Songwriting…piece by piece. The process of creating the best songs comes in bits and pieces for Keys & Corridors. Widdoes says, “Honestly, we kind of just collect little pieces of lyrics as we go. I just try to make sure that I write everything that could possibly be something, like I have it on my phone, or try to write it down as quickly as it comes.” Indeed, Widdoes cell phone contains hundreds of snippets that could be the next new songs for years to come. For Seveney, the voice record function on her phone holds her ideas, vocals, and stories until they are needed. The music wraps around the lyrics as each artist adds his or her own part during the writing process. It was thrilling to see (literally) endless files between Widdoes and Seveney that will become music that fans will love for a lifetime.
The world is at your feet. The excitement for Keys & Corridors, as well as their fans, does not stop with the release of their new EP Thieves. Keys & Corridors is competing for a spot on Warped Tour Battle of the Bands, headlining a CD Release Party, and playing at a myriad of shows in the Cleveland area. They are about to embark on their very first tour and will be letting us in on the experience via video blogs from the road featured on Mind Equals Blown (.net) Tune in and see firsthand what it is like to tour and what they learn along the way.