The notion of home is one place where love can take on meaning through its emotional attachment to a place rather than a person, in reminiscing about what we consider home we often link our emotions to the physical surroundings that bring us comfort and familiarity. If you know anything about Adam Pastel, you know that his strong ties to the Bay Area will always be a part of his identity as an artist. His latest release, "Petaluma," is a love letter to his hometown and a mellowed side of Adam’s vocals we often don’t hear, suggesting the sentimental connection to both the place and the people he calls home.
"Petaluma" is written as a nostalgic drive down memory lane, literally. When I spoke with Adam about the single he described what it was like to grow up in a small town, speaking of serene days filled with long drives, lifelong friendships, and the story of a short-lived romance he mentions briefly in the second verse. The gentle nature of the chorus creates the space for Adam to settle into his most natural vocals, tuning into an authentic vulnerability with which he romanticizes his roots. Following layered harmonies, the verses are where his style moves into a catchy stream of bars accentuated by the bitter aftertaste of young love. Adam’s ability to drift from melodic to rap is the highlight of the track and while the verse may only be a snippet of the song, it is obvious that as much as it's a love letter to his hometown, it's also a message to those people who’s fleeting presence from your early life still linger.
With previous releases often coated underneath textured beats and loud bass, Adams's presence on this track is deconstructed and honest, veering from his most recognized sound yet a position he may shine the most within. If you aren’t already an Adam Pastel fan, you will be after listening to this one.