SoCal’s Scarypoolparty

BY AYESHA KHAN//

Alejandro Aranda—otherwise known as Scarypoolparty—has been steadily gathering a following and is poised to win over an even larger audience. Aranda was a contestant on Season 17 of American Idol, impressing the judges and the crowd with each weekly episode. Aranda, southern California native, was a self-taught street musician prior to taking the stage on American Idol. Although he finished as a runner-up, he has since been buoyed by his success and made several impressive releases. 

Aranda was not always interested in music, however. According to one of his past interviews, it was a freak accident that pushed him to realize and act upon his musical calling. “When I turned 20, I almost lost my hand,” Aranda recounted. He was working at a warehouse and his hand was stuck in the conveyor belt. Had it not been for his long sleeve shirt that got caught up in the conveyor belt, he would have lost his whole hand. The frightening possibility of losing his hand in a warehouse forced him to ask himself “Just what exactly am I doing?,” he explained. From then on, Aranda poured his heart and soul into music and began to upload his music to Instagram. Aranda tagged George Lewis Jr. of Twin Shadow in his post—Lewis got in contact with Aranda the next day and became his benefactor and mentor. Aranda has been blazing the trail since then, touring with Twin Shadow’s, competing on American Idol, and releasing his most recent 21-track, double album, The Act of Forgiveness.

While on the show, Aranda explained that his influences range from Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails to Chopin: opposites but similar in their pursuit of melodic perfection. Aranda’s releases are reflective of his varying music preferences. In his most recent single “Divided”, Aranda teams up with DK the Drummer to produce a mesmerizing track, complete with a hypnotic drum beat—like soft jazz meets electronic music. The melody of “Divided” is worlds apart from the slower, soothing tones in “Return2Sender.” The former captures the chaos of a divided existence but organizes into a steady beat; the latter demonstrates the yearning behind love lost. Then comes “Angel Delete,” barging in—Aranda pairs up with Nu Deco Ensemble to create a sad rock song, very much leaning into his Trent Reznor side. As Aranda mentioned in one of his interviews, there is a little bit of something in his music for everyone. His musical dexterity and flexibility are certain to carry him even further than the heights he has already reached. Aranda has obviously come quite far from his warehouse days and his trajectory is aimed only up. 

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