Alyssa Bonagura, Love Wins Review


Alyssa Bonagura, Love Wins Review

by John Gaddis

Alyssa-Bonagura-cdContemporary country vocalist Alyssa Bonagura has released her multi-faceted gem, Love Wins, unveiled on May 3, 2024, under Extreme Music Library LTD. The EP encapsulates a blend of modern country with a touch of gospel and blues, continuing her trajectory of genre-blending sounds that she has honed over the years. This five-track EP resonates with her Southern storytelling roots, but also ventures into the territories of personal triumph and universal love.

Bonagura’s singing style is a kaleidoscope of influences, from the lyrical narratives of classic country to the expansive soundscapes of Brit-pop and the rebellious energy of rock & roll. Love Wins is an embodiment of these elements, crafted under the unique pressures and inspirations of a one-day recording session. This EP reflects Alyssa’s life experiences, from her early days on a tour bus with her musician parents to her reflective time in England, where she absorbed the nuances of Beatles-esque chord progressions and Coldplay’s atmospheric textures. This gives her the ability to craft a melody that tells a story with her vocal inflections and dynamics.

The EP kicks off with “No Stoppin’ This Train,” laden with metaphors of resilience and renewal; this is our introduction to Alyssa’s warm, expressive vocal style. The song’s driving rhythm mimics the relentless motion of a train, symbolizing Alyssa’s forward momentum after overcoming personal challenges. Following suit, the title track, “Love Wins,” weaves a powerful message of hope and endurance amid adversity, inspired by a tragic event in her hometown of Nashville. The lyrics, “evil tries to make a home in the cracks of your heart like a weed,” poignantly capture the struggles against external and internal battles.

“I’m Done” offers a lighter, more radio-friendly appeal, while “There Was You” shifts gears into a tender, acoustic love ballad that showcases Alyssa’s softer vocal qualities. The EP concludes with “Never Alone,” an emotive ballad that serves as a heartfelt homage to a lost friend, illustrating the therapeutic power of music in mourning and memory.

Alyssa’s work taps into the rich vein of American country music but also integrates elements of gospel and blues, infusing traditional forms with contemporary sensibilities. This blend underscores a broader narrative of cultural fusion and innovation within the genre. The five songs traverse a spectrum of emotions, from the defiance of “No Stoppin’ This Train” to the introspective solace of “Never Alone.” The EP’s progression mirrors a journey of overcoming, healing, and ultimately celebrating love’s triumph. Each track is carefully placed to create an emotional arc that resonates with listeners, encouraging them to find strength and solace in their own lives.

Love Wins is an ideal listen for those who appreciate storytelling in music, blended with a rich vocal tone that spans multiple genres. It’s particularly suited for reflective listening or as an uplifting backdrop to overcome personal challenges. Fans of country fused with elements of rock and pop will find this EP a rewarding experience.

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