2019 breakout artist, Devon Gilfillian packs a punch in 2020 with the release of his debut album, Black Hole Rainbow. The 12-track album available here breathes life into feel-good music with a message. If you’re looking for superficial fluff, Devon is not the artist for you.
Full of raw soul, Devon’s lyrics tell stories of tragedy and triumph in such a beautiful uplifting way that the entire album serves as a manifesto about bettering our own lives.
Devon’s first single “Unchained” showcases his vocal range from falsetto to a deep rich tone with a texture that sends his lyrics cutting through your soul, making you feel invincible.
The music video for “Unchained” was also released today and stars Devon’s brother, Ryan, who due to a car accident, was paralyzed from the waist down. The video shows Ryan going through his day and his will to live.
“Get Out and Get It” is a head-nodding, feet tapping funk jam with smooth vocals overlaying a staticy beat.
One of my favorite tracks on Black Hole Rainbow is “Lonely”, which, much like the rest of the album, puts Devon’s vocals at the forefront with subtle, minimalistic beats that complement his voice and never overshadows it.
Most of the album feels like a gospel, not one I’m being preached to, but one that I’m yearning to hear more of, needing to devour the word of Devon Gilfillian.
On songs like “Thank Me Later” and “Find A Light”, Devon has touches of the raw soul of Otis Redding and Ray Charles smoothed over with the polish of John Legend.
Bringing in some romantic R&B vibes are tracks “Start It Up” and “Stay A Little Longer”. If there was one thing I had to criticize about this stunning debut album, it is the last minute of “Stay A Little Longer” – at six minutes, I could have done without the closing sixty seconds of barely perceivable lyrics overlaying crescendoing instrumentation that is irritating to my ears, forcing me to skip to the next track.
Other tracks on Black Hole Rainbow include “The Good Life”, “Even Though It Hurts”, “Full Disclosure”, and “Stranger”, which features Devon’s father on vocals.
There isn’t a bad or even a mediocre song on the album, which is surprising coming from a new artist. Devon Gilfillian’s talent is abundant vocally, lyrically, and on guitar. Starting today, you can catch Devon on tour with Grace Potter across North America. See tour dates, stream the album, and watch the music video for “Unchained” below.
R&B, Soul, Funk, Gospel, John Legend, Prince, Otis Redding, Ray Charles
Tour Dates with Grace Potter
1/10 | Orlando, FL | House of Blues
1/11 | Ft Lauderdale, FL | Revolution Live
1/12 | Key West, FL | Sunset Grove Lawn
1/15 | Jacksonville, FL | Florida Theatre
1/16 | Raleigh, NC | The Ritz
1/17 | Charlotte, NC | The Fillmore
1/18 | Atlanta, GA | The Tabernacle
1/19 | Asheville, NC | The Orange Peel
1/22 | Cincinnati, OH | Taft Theatre
1/23 | Pittsburgh, PA | Roxian Theatre
1/24 | Philadelphia, PA | The Fillmore
1/25 | Washington, DC | The Anthem
1/28 | New Haven, CT | College Street Music Hall
1/29 | Portland, ME | State Theater
1/30 | Albany, NY | The Egg
1/31 | Boston, MA | House of Blues
2/1 | New York, NY | Beacon Theatre
2/4 | Indianapolis, IN | Vogue
2/5 | Grand Rapids, MI | The Intersection
2/6 | Milwaukee, WI | Pabst Theater
2/7 | Chicago, IL | Riviera Theatre
2/8 | St. Paul, MN | Palace Theatre
2/9 | Des Moines, IA | Hoyt Sherman Place
2/12 | Tulsa, OK | Cain’s Ballroom
2/13 | Oklahoma City, OK | The Jones Assembly
2/14 | Houston, TX | House of Blues
2/15 | Austin, TX | ACL Live at the Moody Theater
2/18 | Birmingham, AL | Iron City
2/19 | Nashville, TN | Ryman Auditorium
2/20 | St. Louis, MO | The Pageant
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Sandy Lo is an author, blogger, journalist, and digital strategist. Her personal story is inspiring. Sandy started StarShine Magazine, an online publication in 2001, at the age of 18. She wrote her first novel in 2009, “Lost In You,” followed by the “Dream Catchers” Series. She was the first person ever to professionally interview Taylor Swift and has received personal endorsements for her books from members of boy bands Backstreet Boys and 98 Degrees.