Blue-eyed soul crooner, Kelsy Karter returns with a silver slice of rock on her fresh single “God Knows I’ve Tried.” The New Zealand born, LA based-artist first stopped us in our tracks with her single “Out of Drugs,” following-up a signature aroma of vintage rock’n roll with singles in between. The latest offering sees Karter unveiling more of herself, edging on a harder platform of rock than simply soul, and takes form towards a more natural, expressive fit.
Ceremonial hymns bless the track’s opening minute, graciously allowing the gentle electric plucks to make their way for Karter. Knowing Karter can unleash her powerhouse vocals at any second, the essence of her control is welcoming. The first few lines slowly swoons against the lead guitar, cutting open a vivid past of rebellion — “Daddy wishes I was the girl next door / mommy tells me I should smile some more.” — and the comments that follow. “I’ve spent my whole life being rebellious and doing what people told me not to do. And when you have that kind of spirit, somebody always gets hurt. I guess ‘God Knows I’ve Tried’ is just my apology letter in the form of a rock&roll ballad.”
The hymns come to a halt on Karter’s final reassurance, “…but God knows I’ve tried to be good.” Exploding with past hurt and sincerity, the track bleeds into a chunk of nostalgic rock. Ripe and emotive vocals slice the remaining verses, triumphantly pleading over drums and crunchy guitar chords. Lulling back into ceremonial keys, Karter continues her passionate and personal croon, reflectively owning up to her past mistakes, yet holding onto her determination of not necessarily being the “rebel,” but being herself; understanding that her definition of “normal” isn’t aligned to others.
Noting the track’s inspirational feel, Karter further expressed the track’s meaning on her Facebook: “This song is for all the kids that aren’t perfect, the ones that go left when everyone else goes “right”. the ones that are only truly themselves when face to face with trouble. we are the kids with a deep desire to be bold and ridiculous most all of the time, and whether authority wants to believe it or not, we are the ones that make up all of your heroes. i have tried to meet the standards of what others call “good” or even “normal”, but i can’t keep up and i’m done pretending that i can. evidence shows that maybe it’s just not my path. i’ve broken most rules and paid dearly for it, but doing bad things doesn’t make you a bad person. it makes you an interesting one.”