• The Vibe

The Smallest Giant brings an “Old School” style to Indie Rock with “Back Then”

Haley Gowland’s indie pop solo project, The Smallest Giant, has officially taken root in Nederland, Colorado. The bright new single “Back Then,” out February 3 wherever you get your music, presents lyrics founded in raw truth, and melodies built to live in each listener’s head.

Way up through the canyons and into the mountain towns of Colorado, quarantine looks a little different; The quiet of the woods is serene, and Gowland isn’t the first to find an abundance of creativity in such isolation. Born here, in the foam-padded walls of a DIY studio, Gowland’s new song ruminates on how nostalgia can hit in the most unexpected, dull moments.

Haley Gowland comes from a long line of successful, ear-wormy projects. Her former, New England-based band, The Cranks, opened for bands like 3OH!3, PVRIS, and Paramore. This power trio created several acclaimed releases in their time:

“Sonically gratifying and musically astute....Just the best EP release we've heard all year. Outstanding!” Douglas Sloan in New England’s Metronome, 2015.

“Super Sweet indie pop that is catchy as hell and a lot of fun” Phil Russell in SOLCOFN Music Blog, 2015.

Gowland left home to explore Colorado when the group disbanded in 2017. She claims that she may not have found the time and energy between the pressures of adult life to begin seriously creating again if it wasn’t for for pandemic: “I finally had time to stop and reflect, and so I thought, ‘Now’s the time to take risks and be vulnerable.’”

Her debut release, a “consciously poppy” tune, was well received:

“The Smallest Giant has the ability to bring up memories of your own as you feed off her words. Songs feel alive and can make you feel alive along with them.” http://www.thesoundswontstop.com, 2021

This release is just the beginning of a new breed of music from Gowland: While remaining melodic and energetic, she vows to be more authentic in her lyrics. “I was literally in a pharmacy, smelling candles, when I was hit by a raw nostalgia for a relationship that ended badly.” She adds, “Writing about a smell? That’s borderline creepy, right? Hard to write about. But smell is our most nostalgic sense, and it brought me back to something very real. Being vulnerable is scary. But music is powerful, and I’m going to make sure my songs offer validation, and truth through intricacy and intimacy.”