Girlpool Drummer Releases Solo Indie Rock Album
Total Heat is the lo-fi pop project of LA-based artist Ross Wallace Chait. With over fifteen years of experience as a drummer and formally trained in jazz, before beginning this solo project he toured/collaborated with artists like Girlpool; in that time, he was slowly building up a persona. In his bio on Bandcamp, there’s a few reminders for his listeners: “Total Heat is a ceremony / Total Heat is a light / Total Heat is for the spirits / Total Heat's alright.” In regards to Totally Real, Total Heat’s debut album, it’s the result of Chait’s time playing jazz in his teens and the formation of his high school bands, his countless strange and funky musical discoveries, those small moments that eventually accumulate into big ones. Chait explained that it’s “a combo of everything I’ve done and do,” that it’s about “about the truths of my life, with a little bit of lies.”
Though the album seems to operate in negative space, with hushed vocals and muted melodies, there’s a quiet intensity that comes through that’s consistent throughout; tracks like “Get Started” and “Free Life” hint at the slow but thoughtful construction of an inner world, one protected from the chaos of the external. At times, it feels as if you might be intruding; these tracks represent an artist understanding and coming to terms with their creative process, their identity, their future. Thankfully for us, however, Chait doesn’t want to shut us out.