EXNATIONS Drop New Year's Single "11:59"

Bright and bold pop trio EXNATIONS dropped their latest single “11:59” on New Year’s Day. This song serves as an introduction to a series of singles the band has set to release throughout early 2020. Sal Mastrocola, Taylor Hughes, and John O’Neill create a sound and brand that is both aesthetic and glowing. By using a blend of classic piano, dreamy synths, and emotive vocals, listeners can identify this is an EXNATIONS song as their unique sound is almost instantly recognizable. “11:59” details kicking off the new year in a sad yet sparkling fashion.

An aspect of EXNATIONS’ music that I love is how each sound or instrument is perfectly layered and blended throughout. The beginning of the song slowly builds from echoing vocals and background chatter to more intense synths and impassioned vocals which tell a story of taking a moment away from the party to reflect. Before you know it, you are completely immersed in the scene this song creates.

A line which repeats often throughout the song is, “You barely held on this year,” which is eventually mirrored by, “That’s okay, I’m barely hanging on, too”, breaking into the climax of the song. This point brings in more intense and expressive guitar, drums, and vocals. Something really incredible about this song is not only how well all these elements blend, but the beautiful, seamless build from a slow, atmospheric sound, to a larger than life, energetic end.

I think overall this is one of EXNATIONS' best releases so far. It is truly a beautifully written and produced song, and represents the unique sound the band has created perfectly. The purposeful lyrics, strong build, and feeling of immersion are sure to impress any listener. Take a moment for yourself to step away from life’s responsibilities, and give “11:59” a listen— you won’t regret it.

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