Invisible Patterns is a side project featuring the members of Montclair, NJ’s Elk City, helmed by guitarist Chris Robertson. MusicTAP is very pleased to present this brand-new track and video, “Wake Up”.

An interesting story, certainly: the morning after the 2016 election, Chris quickly wrote out all the lyrics for a new song. He had never written about politics before and put them aside for the moment. A week later, he was inspired to write music for them. After singing the finished composition at the piano, Robertson decided to record it immediately, laying down all the instrumental tracks and vocals at home. 

“At this point I felt pretty good about the song,” Chris says. “It wasn’t taking potshots at Trump. That would be too easy and predictable. Instead, this was looking at the things the administration dragged out from underneath. The things, as a New Yorker, I don’t readily encounter. If we are to evolve as citizens of the world, especially with how technology has made the world a smaller place, we need to know how half this nation thinks and feels.” Robertson felt the writing and recording had been great therapy, but was uncomfortable sharing the song with others. He sat on it for more than a year before playing it for his bandmates in Elk City, Ray Ketchem, Renee LoBue and Richard Baluyut. After hearing it, they urged him to release the song and offered to help him finish it. Ketchem took Chris’ home recordings to his Magic Door Recording studio in Montclair and added drums, backing vocals by LoBue and a dub-inspired bass line by Baluyut. He then mixed the track in the autumn of 2018 and Robertson was thrilled with the end results. Then, inspired by some films he’d been scoring, Chris decided to shoot a video. He purposefully avoided political imagery, choosing visuals that conveyed the mood of the lyrics abstractly. The desolate images of isolation are commentary on social media’s creation of platforms for ideological extremism that divides large segments of the American citizenry at a time we need most to be united. 

Not a lightweight offering, this is something you will be able to absorb and take to heart.

By Rob Ross

Rob Ross has been involved in the music industry for over 30 years - as guitarist/singer/songwriter with The Punch Line, freelance journalist, producer, manager and working for independent and major record labels. He resides in Staten Island, New York with his wife and cats; he works out a lot, reads voraciously, loves Big Star, traveling down South and his orange Gretsch. He's pretty groovy!