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The Evolution of Max Frost

With the help of his creative mentor, this artist has transformed on his debut album, Gold Rush

With two EPs under his belt, Austin native Max Frost was looking to challenge himself creatively on his debut album. By enlisting the help of Michael “Fitz” Fitzpatrick of Fitz and the Tantrums, Frost was able to unleash a new side of himself as an artist. “Fitz coming on board was a game changer,” Frost says. “The past year has been a big transformational time for me from changing the way I write to the kind of constraints I put on myself and my team.” Frost describes how there was moment when he felt as though he was too comfortable in his own artistry. As a solo artist, he craved an outside voice, or mentor, to push him out of his comfort zone musically, and Fitz was that person.

Frost’s newly released debut album, Gold Rush, offers a bright pop sound with traces of funk laced throughout. Following his 2015 EP Intoxication, Frost definitely stripped his sound down to be more streamlined and distinct. “Lyrically, this music is much more direct. I think it is melodically stronger, more narrowed down, sharpened and tempered,” Frost says of Gold Rush. On his musical transformation, Frost says he used to be more “consciously eclectic” rather than what he naturally gravitates to, which is pop music. “To choose to be eclectic is just as cheesy as if you choose to be pop. You need to do what is authentic to you,” he decides.

By pushing his own boundaries, with the help of executive producer Fitz, Frost was able to tap into an honest and slightly risky sound that works for him. With bold anthemic songs like “Sometimes” and “New Confessional,” the musicality of Frost could not be described as typically pop. There is a range of instrumentation and Frost flawlessly demonstrates his powerhouse vocal ability. Though the album has many layers to it lyrically and sonically, Frost insists that Gold Rush is his most authentic self. “What is authentic to me is soul influenced, blues influenced, and hip-hop influenced pop music that leans a little bit left of center,” he says of his newly discovered sound.

From opening for Panic! at The Disco to Gary Clark Jr., Frost has surrounded himself with talented artists across all genres. This fall, he will be supporting Twenty One Pilots on their headlining tour with AWOLNATION. As an opening act, Frost says his set will maintain his signature one-man show aspect, featuring just a slew of instruments and a loop on stage. “It is me unveiling the process of how the music is made, while still delivering the songs, playing to the crowd and being present with them. It’s the thing I’m most proud of right now,” Frost says of his live show.

Catch Max Frost on tour with Twenty One Pilots now.