Russ Nelson is a Rock artist from Butte, Montana who dabbles in blues and funk music. His third and latest single “5AM” is a rock track through and through that feels like the soundtrack for a mystery or a crime thriller when the action building up. The cover art filled with black and white along with murderous red only adds to this theme.

The song starts off with a whistle tone that stays in the background throughout the track. Though this is a minor element and one really needs to put their ears in between the various elements to hear its presence, it does the heavy lifting when it comes to setting up much of the ambience. The electric guitar adds a great deal to the single providing a sense of urgency and the ambience of a transition and a build-up. The percussion is rhythmic, groovy and keeps the track alive. The lead vocals by Russ Nelson are husky and layered with a whisper which fully recedes to the background during the bridge. The chorus is intentionally grungy and the mellowed down instrumentation post-chorus makes for a nice juxtaposition between the two.

Lyrically the penmanship is just as mysterious as the energy the track sonically gives off. I thought that it attempted to explore a person’s grouse with the sudden disappearance of their unloving partner. It is largely about angst and letting go in the absence of closure. While I found that the lyrics didn’t necessarily match the sonic palette, this remained irrelevant to this track by Russ Nelson as it prioritises instrumentation over lyricism.

If you are in the mood for high-energy mysterious rock, Russ Nelson is the artist for you.