Review: Invicta by Karolina Rose

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By: EJ Jolly

In Latin, “invicta” means unconquered. For Karolina Rose, there is no other option but. After leaving behind the world of business and Wall Street, her long-awaited INVICTA EP is a testament to her journey through challenge and sacrifice in the pursuit of her dreams.

Opening with the glittering track ‘Crystal Gem’, it's clear that the EP is heavily inspired by European synth-pop. But there are clear modern influences that shine through - Rose’s deep and effervescent vocals, and the heavy drum lines taking over and driving the synth in tracks like ‘Love Crazy’ and ‘Downhill’. The production masterfully weaves between these differing styles, and it's all courtesy of Andros Rodriguez (Madonna, Florence + The Machine), a multi-platinum, Grammy award winning producer known for his ability work within all genres of music.

No one can stop me now” is the first line Rose greets us with, and there's no question what her message with this EP is. Her music is just as driven and determined as she is, full of infectious beats that you’re dancing along to before you even know it. ‘Going to Berlin’ and ‘Move with Me’ open with powerful synth lines, reminiscent of the quintessential 80s sound. It creates a vivid image in your mind’s eye, perhaps of an underground club with pulsing lights, the layers of music getting deep under your skin and sending you into a trance. But the stories behind each tune are nothing shallow; grief manifesting through dreams, overcoming heartbreak, and the stress of pursuing your passions are just a few of the themes Rose explores in her music.

INVICTA may be dark, but it is not a sad record - merging themes of strength, courage and determination with angsty electronica, Rose has proven to everyone that she's come to not only fight, but conquer. "Following your truth is not always the easy choice” says Rose. This is why she chose the name INVICTA: “it is to say 'I did it' and I am ready to fight for what I love."