October 1, 2021 Developing Artist Showcase – Crystal Joilena
Like a creature spawned from your darkest fantasies, Crystal Joilena is an interesting artist on the rise. For those just learning of her, she started to turn more heads following her collaboration with Chris Motionless on “Eternally Yours” for Motionless In White’s Motion Picture Collection EP. Additionally, her cover of Trivium’s “Until The World Goes Cold” received a swarm of attention after being shared by Matt Heafy. Impressive! So let us look a little deeper into the labyrinth that is Crystal Joilena.
Possessing a Dark Alternative/Pop Rock sound, New York’s own Crystal Joilena is influenced by everyone from Garbage to Depeche Mode. Having released a slew of compelling songs over the past five years, she is back to sink her teeth into her listeners with her latest single. Only weeks after releasing “Holy Misery,” the collaboration with Tommy Roulette (vocalist for Jynx) that has been rabidly consumed by audiences, Joilena has recently released her newest track, “Not Saying That I’m Sorry.” A prelude to her planned full-length album due out in late October 2021, it features Alt Rock solo artist BABYCHAOS (Lyzzie Larosa), who brings a unique element to the already stellar track.
This song is one of many that were produced by Joakim “Jolly” Karlsson (guitarist for Bad Omens), proving that the collaborative efforts of Joilena and Karlsson are a total match made in heaven. Joilena is all-in when it comes to her music, writing the lyrics and going over every detail with a fine-tooth comb to create something magical every time you press “play.”
Despite the current pandemic, distance was no issue as Joilena was able to record her vocals in New York, while BABYCHAOS recorded her part down in Florida. The entangling of their voices is electric, igniting a spark from the moment the music kicks in. Joilena’s screams are such a delight, showcasing that she’s more than just “silky vocals,” and is more than capable of packing a severe punch to the jugular. BABYCHAOS’ soft, enchanting voice, layered with Joilena’s striking hard vocals are what makes this track so addictive.
While the inspiration behind the lyrics is mostly up for interpretation, it’s ultimately about the feeling of being free from something toxic in your life. Joilena notes, “The main lyrics ‘I’m not saying that I’m sorry’ mean a lot to me, because in the past I would continuously apologize all the time for everything and feel like I was in the wrong when I wasn’t. Coming to the realization that some people will just never be happy no matter how you live your life was the best thing for my own happiness.”
The song’s twisted, dark fantasy elements spill over into the music video perfectly. The video is inspired by Salem, Massachusetts and its rich history of witches, with modern and gothic elements. It’s fun and captivating, entrapping you in its spell. So if this is any indication of what is to come once Joilena releases her debut album, we are in for a wild ride.