On Georgia Cortes Rayner’s Bandcamp page it states “Georgia's distinctive smooth vocals and heartfelt lyrics combine with her music to create something that is best described as folk (with a touch of country), blues, with a bit of rock, bit of hip hop, social commentary/protest and her own style of quirky moody observational existential angst.” I would say that’s spot on description after listening to her release The Past Is A Passenger. “Don't Poke The Bear” is the opener and has a very loose feel to it. The music is warm and slightly funky folk. One of the things I really enjoyed about this was the different vocal style that Rayner brings to the table. On the verse there’s this fluid stream of consciousness that almost sounds improvised which works quite well. She switches it up on the chorus and provides some melodies that are easy to appreciate. “So Much Ugly” seems to be dealing with a topic about someone's personality that isn’t all that flattering. The song has a lot of things going for it including a subtle but kinetic groove. The song is acoustic and everything in the mix comes together to support the vocals. “You're Still Our Superman” is more somber but felt like an appropriate mood three songs in. I loved her vocal approach in this context. To my ears it felt very heartfelt and relatable. Additionally, I thought the way the additional instruments pick up some of the momentum was very well done. “Flame” gets the energy revved up and this song felt like a single. It’s explosive, cathartic and visceral. There’s a constant push and pull with tension on this song and when the chorus arrives you feel like you’re home. What a wonderful tune. There’s melancholy with the graceful “We Are Here” which shifts as it progresses. In some ways I felt like I was coming out of the darkness. I thought there was a lot of variety as you get deeper into the album but I got the feeling there was a lot of thought put into the order of the songs. Some of my favorites include “Make Believe,” "Pineapple Ridge” and “Unplanned Destination” but my recommendation is to just hit play. There has been a lot of talk about AI recently, but I don’t see it making music like this anytime soon. This is the type of music that connects with your soul and I for one felt that after connecting with this album.
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