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  • Alexa Leung

Review: "Growing Pains" - Crystal Skies x SOUNDR



As part of their latest album “Stardust”, “Growing Pains” is the first track of Crystal Skies’ 2024 release, in collaboration with SOUNDR. Melodic bass and heavenly vocals, Crystal Skies and SOUNDR have come together to create a pop EDM track that’s all about the pains of letting go and growing up further and farther from those who we once loved. More so, it’s about becoming too large and too vast for that which once contained us, and having to move on to allow yourself to continue that growth and molding of your self and soul. Crystal Skies and SOUNDR create a perfect trio of sound, and with lyrics that touch topics close to everyone’s heart, “Growing Pains” is a song whose emotional peaks weave people together with both universal melodies and messages.





“Growing Pains” is quintessential pop EDM; with the combination of SOUNDR’s beautifully smooth vocals and Crystal Skies’ vast instrumentals, you get that classic dubstep feel with the emotional intensity of the song’s lyrics. The track is, in a word, immense– dubstep tends to be that way, but the beat drops in “Growing Pains” feel a lot like standing at the top of the word, overlooking the wide land with the wind whipping your hair. The track’s mixing is superb, excellently composed. The songwriting will similarly blow you away– detailing how we grow up and move past other people, love lost but gaining the self, the lyrics are poetic and moving. The line “But love I know, if I stayed / I wouldn’t live long in this cage” comes right before a huge beat drop, and I feel like it’s such a perfect place for the line. Staying as being a cage is such a tasteful way to describe the feeling of being trapped, and there’s a multitude of lines like this one in the song. “Growing Pains” is just one of those tracks that you can’t help but leave on loop; the interspersing of vocals and instrumentals will keep you listening to it over and over and over again with its excellent composition and message.


Crystal Skies is an American EDM duo whose dubstep sounds resonate both melodically and emotionally with their listeners. The duo is formed by Britian Holcomb and Aaron Dawson, from Louisiana and Philadelphia, respectively. They initially embarked on solo careers, but after collaborating they realized there was pure magic when they put their musical skills together. “Paradise Lost” was their first collaboration, and the rest is history. Their debut single as Crystal Skies released in 2014, entitled “The Light”; and their debut album “Not Since When” dropped in 2022. With nearly 300,000 listeners on Spotify and the release of “Growing Pains”, 2024 will surely be a bright year for Crystal Skies. Likewise, Kate Thomas of SOUNDR is a singer-songwriter whose musical journey began in 2017. She’s worked with producers such as MitiS, Adventure Club, and BLANKE, and has also amassed millions of streams over her platforms while building a dedicated fanbase. “Growing Pains” is far from her first collaboration in 2024, as her most recent was “Feel Fine”. If you enjoyed both Crystal Skies and SOUNDR’s collaboration in “Growing Pains”, check both of their vast discographies out to get more of their amazing soundscapes.


Written By Alexa Leung



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