“This is a collection of songs about searching for love and sometimes finding it. It’s about choosing optimism over pessimism. It’s about searching for my place in the world among the chaos,” Eric Pedigo says of his latest release, Sun & Shade. Because that’s the kind of guy Pedigo is: the kind who writes about being “in love with a stranger because [he] ain’t met [them] yet” on “In Love With a Stranger”, or the kind of person who turns a breakup into a series of inspiring mantras, as on “Knock Me Down”.
Among the pop songs that weave tales of relationships at different stages and insist you keep your head up no matter what, there is a raw touch to Pedigo’s music. The opening song is a warm-up that doubles as an intro. We hear lovely vocalization paired with simple strumming that grows distant as the track progresses: the artist as a human. This is reiterated with a live — though with that voice it’s almost hard to tell — version of “Don’t Keep Me Waiting”.
“My first solo EP, Parachute, was released in February of 2014. It was an eye opener in that I found that I had a lot to learn and a long way to go,” Pedigo says, and it’s hard not to hear that careful craft, that passion for music, in these songs. When he delves into new territory, such as the heavier pulse of “My Oh My”, you can sense growth in the self-duet and the restrained percussion. “I can’t help but wonder if this road I’m on will lead me home,” he sings, and it feels personal. This point lands with the following and equally as introspective track, “Where I Belong”.
Finishing with the piano ballad “Moonlight of Love”, Pedigo returns to romance and longing and creates his biggest song yet for a strong finish. This is the kind of song you blast and let wash over you, the kind of song that remains long after the album has finished.