DJ Edwards’ new project pulls from a depth previously unexplored. Titled Never Better, Edwards leads a new Charleston based alternative rock outfit delivering material that he’s kept unknown until now. “I released this track called ‘Be Here’; it’s one I wrote in 2015, so I’ve been sitting on it for a long, long time,” Edwards says. Citing a few unfortunate events and his own coming-of-age as the track’s inspiration, Edwards has more to give.
“I worked really hard to keep it simple,” says Edwards. “It’s easy to get way too wordy and go in too deep; I wanted to be short and sweet. I think that’s what I accomplished and I’m really proud to finally get it out there.”
For those unfamiliar, Edwards is one of the most active members in the Charleston music scene. His resume includes drumming for Baby Yaga, operating his label Real South Records, and filling in for peers’ bands whenever he’s needed, just to name a few. Modeling his calendar after Elon Musk’s, “I pretty much just book myself weeks in advance, knowing exactly what I’m doing from the time I wake up till the time I go to bed.”
“Right now, I’m going to stick with singles,” says Edwards about releasing more material. “Why not release 45 singles throughout the year, then all at once?” he questions. “I’m going into a plethora of different studios for the tracks that I’m releasing, so each one is going to sound a little different.”
The latest single “Be Here” is introspective. Leading with a simple pop melody, the track is supported by driving drums and guitar. The track communicates a universal theme of feeling unwanted. Edwards wrote the single while having just been on the brunt of a broken-off engagement to his high school sweetheart, getting laid off from his job, and using the only money he had left to pull a friend out of a bad situation.
“I would just sit in my room alone at night trying to sleep, unsuccessfully,” says Edwards. “I didn’t have any stuff really, the only thing that I could focus on was in this apartment,” he adds. “Whenever the moon was out, it would shine through this one window, all over this really brashed-up — but I knew was beautiful at one time — hardwood floors.”
Never Better partnered up with local band Short Division for a two-song split release featuring “Be Here” along with Short Division’s “City Song,” described as “a sentimental journey of two lovers starting a new period of their lives” — it’s a nice juxtaposition considering the events that inspired “Be Here.”
Edwards is confident that he’s sitting on a few more gems and is eager to get recorded and released. Never Better’s first headlining show is tonight (and free) at Big Gun Burger Shop, and Edwards assures that it will be a crazy night filled with new material and great covers.
Never Better and Short Division’s split release is available on streaming platforms now.