Russell Nelson, 29, was, from the get-go, a natural musician. Spectating his uncle playing his guitar since childhood, Russell always displayed an avid interest in pursuing a musical career. One could almost say the minute he received his first guitar from his uncle at age 8, he hasn’t put it down since. However, the pivotal moment in his career was when he made the decision to head to the Musician’s Institute in Hollywood, California, where he received his guitar associates in performance arts. This landed him in a local band for a healthy run, landing shows in places like the House of Blues. Despite their success as a band, one good fight forced Russell to move back home to Montana. With this, he grew up, and brought with him a new perspective and brand new game face: Shellshock Lullaby, joined by Hannah Skiles and Andrew Ellmaker. A perfect mixture of alternative, pop-punk, and emo, Shellshock Lullaby is Russell’s artistic vision sprung to life, with emotionally-charged anthems dedicated to overcoming hardship, exploring the grey areas of life, and emerging victorious. A road very much like the one he has walked, and he encourages his 18 thousand fans (and counting) to take life by similar reins.
“Shellshock Lullaby does a great job of putting their name out there through the medium of this EP. The seven tracks are something for an artist to be proud of. Shades of Grey…”
– Mind Equals Blown
The title for Shellshock Lullaby’s EP (Shades of Grey) was chosen to help describe the plight of current sociological approaches to life and the destruction that duality causes in our everyday lives. People tend to see life as a construct of black and white, this way or that, wrong or right while completely ignoring the entire spectrum of possibility in between those 2 extremes. The songs on this release relate to the emotions that all people feel in between the polar ends of life’s emotional spectrum and help to provide solace in the realization that we should embrace everything we feel no matter how “good, bad, or indifferent” it may seem to others. The realization that all is one and all is related is a concept that many ignore but it is the basis of our existence.
SSL released an acoustic album entitled “A Lighter Shade” in 2015. The album has 7 acoustic versions of previously released tracks from their debut self-titled EP, Shellshock Lullaby, and sophomore release, “Shades of Grey,” as well as a brand new single, “Without Serendipity”.
The first single, “Backwards”, is an instant power pop classic. Complete with melodic vocal harmonies, and a hard hitting chorus, the song seems to build and breathe as it plays on.
“As a 21 year old kid, I would have simply said enjoy your youth because when I wrote this song I was at a defiant low point in my life. I wanted to go backwards in to time. Now 29 and wiser. I would say to the theme is to live your life to the fullest and make sure you are happy in your life. I was young and searching for a lot of answers at the time and I came to the conclusion that we all have one life that we know of so no matter what gets thrown at us, we always need to make the most of every second, every breath. So in a nutshell, ‘Live it up because you only live once. Make every second count’”, explains songwriter Russell Nelson of the bands single.
Although the single does speak volumes for the EP, to get a real understanding for where Shellshock Lullaby are coming from, it should be heard in its entirety.
“We’ve really ventured more into the world of electronic and EDM music; let that seep through into this album. This album in itself will absolutely shape my future work in the sense that I’m comfortable with stepping away from the whole ‘rock n roll’
image. I took a different approach to a song I wrote in my very early 20s, and revisited it in a way that shows the listener I have grown up and things aren’t so bleak anymore“, says the Nelson of the album and evolution in songwriting.
Having shared the stage with legends like Black Flag and .38 Special, performing at tons of venues and festivals, and even obtained airplay on stations like Underground Pulse Radio, 850KOA, NBTMusicRadio, TRS24/7 Radio, Pandora, and more, the band is certainly not new to gaining the momentum needed to get the songs out there.
All in all, there is always a message to be heard and as Nelson himself has a personal mantra.
“I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul” -William Blake.
“This is more or less the message I want to convey to my listeners, as well as writing for myself, kind of pushing myself to be the person I’ve always dreamt I’d become”, says Nelson.
For a limited time Shellshock Lullaby is giving away a free single from each of his three albums at https://sslofficial.com. Three additional tracks off the new EP, A Lighter Shade are available to stream on the website as well.
Shellshock Lullaby – No Tomorrow
Shellshock Lullaby – Shades of Grey
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Band location – Butte, Montana
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