Category: lyric video

Lyric Video: Chicago’s Así Así Shares a Hypnotic New Single

Chicago-based indie outfit Así Así — Fernando de Buen (vocals, guitar), Ben Geissel (drums), Celeen Rusk (vocals, keys) and Sam Coplin (bass) — can trace their origins back to 2018, as the continuation of a previous project, El Mañana, which was originally founded in Mexico City before the band’s members relocated to Chicago. Whether as El Mañana or Así Así, the Chicago-based band is a part of the city’s growing Latin rock scene — and has played at a number of venues across the Chicago area. 

Así Así’s sound sees the quartet and blending elements of rock, dance and Latin with arrangements that feature acoustic and electronic drums, synths, guitars paired with propulsive grooves frequently create material that’s haunting yet upbeat and catchy. 

Their debut single “Carne Molida” was released back in 2020 and received coverage in RemezclaFilter Mexico and Indie Rocks, as well as airplay on Mexico City’s Reactor, 105.75FM.

Recorded at Palisade Studios, the Chicago-based outfit’s Fernando de Buen and Marcus Reese co-produced album Mal Otras is slated for release later this year. Last month, I wrote about album single “Yo La Sé” is a dreamy and expansive track featuring a driving, motorik-like groove, glistening guitars, de Buen’s plaintive vocals and an uneasy bass outro. While the song evokes the sensation of waking up from an unpleasant and incredibly vivid dream, the song thematically focuses on a familiar sensation of all of us now — a deep-seated frustration over the seemingly never-ending stream of terrible news.

The Chicago-based quartet’s latest single “Me Quedo Ahí” is a trippy song heavily indebted to 70s and 80s psychedelic cumbia with hints of the indie rock that they band has been known for with the song featuring glistening keys, reverb-drenched guitars, a strutting bass line, and shuffling rhythms paired de Buen’s dreamy vocals and a glistening guitar solo. The end result is a song that may arguably be their trippiest yet most danceable song to date.

Lyric Video: Entrée Libre Shares a Wistful New Single

Formed back in 2019. Parisian indie electro pop duo Entrée Libre consists of two childhood friends, who derived the project’s name from the first letter of their first names. Sonically, the pair have developed joyful, spontaneous and hook driven pop, which for the band has served as an escape from our strange and uncertain moment.

Entrée Libre’s debut EP Avant-Premiére officially dropped yesterday. The EP features previously released singles “Dehors,” “Aller Simple,” a dance floor friendly track that’s one-part 80s New Order, one- part JOVM mainstays DBFC, one-part Daft Punk and “Corps à corps,” a hook-driven, LCD Soundsystem-like bop that’s perhaps even more danceable than its immediate predecessor.

Avant-Premiére‘s fourth and latest single “Pixel” is a breezy yet wistful bop centered around glistening synth arpeggios, a chugging motorik groove, skittering beats paired with plaintive harmonies. The end result is a song that, to my ears, recalls Trans Europe Express-era Kraftwerk and fellow countrymen DBFC and La Femme.

The accompanying lyric video features the duo in an empty theater changing seats while a maintenance person cleans up. 

Lyric Video: Entrée Libre Shares a Funky Dance Punk Bop

I’m in Baltimore for a couple of days to visit family, hang out and to catch a show. The posts will be a bit intermittent until my return — but in the meantime . . .

Formed back in 2019. Parisian indie electro pop duo Entrée Libre consists of two childhood friends, who derived the project’s name from the first letter of their first names. Sonically, the pair have developed joyful, spontaneous and hook driven pop, which for the band has served as an escape from the our strange and uncertain moment.

Entrée Libre’s debut EP Avant-Premiére is slated for a May 13, 2022 release. The EP will feature previously released singles “L’Air du temps,” “Dehors” and “Aller Simple,” a dance floor friendly track that’s one-part 80s New Order, one- part JOVM mainstays DBFC, one-part Daft Punk.

“Corps à corps,” Avant-Premiére‘s fourth and latest single is another dance floor friendly bop — but this time more along the lines of LCD Soundsystem: angular bursts of funk guitar, sinuous bass lines, buzzing bass synths, relentless four-on-the-floor and copious cowbell are placed within a hook-driven song structure. Fittingly for a danceable song, the song’s French’s lyrics detail the movements of bodies approaching and then repelling each seemingly in an off-kilter fashion.

The accompanying lyric video features the duo in an empty theater changing seats while a maintenance person cleans up.

Lyric Video: JOVM Mainstays Ibeyi Teams up with BERWYN on a Swaggering and Impassioned Re-Imagining of Black Flag Anthem

Deriving their name from the Yoruba word for twins ibeji, the acclaimed French-Cuban, London-based twin sibling duo and JOVM mainstays Ibeyi (pronounced ee-bey-ee) — Lisa-Kainde Diaz and Naomi Diaz — can trace the origins of their music career to growing up in a deeply musical home: their father, Anga Diaz, was best known for his work as a member of the intentionally acclaimed Buena Vista Social Club and for collaborating with Ibrahim Ferrer, Ruben Gonzalez and Compay Segundo. Anga died when the twins turned 11.

After their father’s death, Lisa-Kainde and Naomi began studying Yoruba folk songs and the cajon, an Afro-Caribbean drum that the twins’ father played throughout most of his career. Interestingly, although Yoruba is primarily spoken in Nigeria and Benin, the African language has been spoken in some form in Cuba since the 1700s, when the slave trade brought Africans en masse to the Caribbean. So when the twins started studying their late father’s musical and culture heritage, they had a deeper understanding of their father and of their ancestral history.

Ibeyi’s 2015 self-titled debut was released to widespread, international critical applause. Thematically, the album dealt with the weight of the past — in particular, their father’s life and death, their relationship with each other, their origins and their connection with their roots. Sonically, the album saw the Diaz Sisters quickly establishing a unique sound with elements of electro pop, hip-hop, jazz, the blues and Yoruba folk music.

The French-Cuban JOVM mainstays’ sophomore album 2017’s Ash saw them writing songs firmly rooted in Afro-Cuban culture and history — but while arguably being among the most visceral, politically charged material of their catalog to date, with the album’s material thematically touching upon race, gender and sexual identity. 

Slated for a May 6, 2022 release through XL RecordingsSpell 31, Ibeyi’s third album derives its title from “Spell 31” in The Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead, which interestingly enough became the premise of the album’s first single “Made of Gold,” a lushly textured song featuring atmospheric synths, buzzing bass synths, skittering tweeter and woofer rattling beats, the twins’ gorgeous and dreamy harmonizing and a guest spot from Gambian-British emcee Pa Salieu.

When the twins returned to the studio to write and record new material, they had felt a sense of chaos, informed by the chaotic state of the world surrounding them. As they got to work, they set out to invoke the age-old teachings of their ancestors to remobilize the power of their birth-given destiny as Ibeyi. 

The album reportedly sees the twins on a path to restoration in pursuit of true harmony, healing and magic — all of which, we desperately need right now. The JOVM mainstays commissioned activist and storyteller Janaya Future Khan to write an essay for them, after meeting the activist and storyteller. Khan explains “Ibeyi’s Spell 31 is their boldest offering yet, an antidote to apathy in a divided world.” They explain further, “Spell 31 casts with conviction, transmuting nihilism into sangoma, binaries into endless dualites, moral austerity into abundance. A subversive and halcyonic manifesto from queens of a sovereign land, Ibeyi occupies the liminal, the space between life and death, past and present, right and wrong, and calls for the interior revelations that create the systemic revolutions we long for.”

Continuing their successful collaboration with their long-time producer Richard Russell, Spell 31‘s 10 songs were written, produced and recorded by the duo and features appearances from Jorja SmithBERYWN, the twins’ father and mother, and the aforementioned Pa Salieu. The album also features a reimagining of Black Flag‘s “Rise Above.”

Earlier this year, I wrote about album track “Sister 2 Sister.” Centered around a hyper-modern production featuring wobbling bass synths, skittering beats, glistening synths and the twins’ uncanny and gorgeous harmonizing, “Sister 2 Sister” is inspired by their Afro-Latin roots and their sisterhood: The song sees the twins recalling a fond memory of singing along to Shakira in the mirror. But they also talk of the knowledge that despite the times they might be at odds with other, they know they can always depend on and rely on each other.

Spell 31‘s latest single sees the JOVM mainstays re-imaging Black Flag‘s 1981 anthem “Rise Above” that features a guest spot from London-based artist BERWYN. Having never heard the song before, Lisa-Kainde and Naomi were presented the song’s lyrics by their producer Richard Russell. They quickly got to work, looping an old sample of their father drums, improvising a completely new sonic take for a song originally written back in the 80s, that still resonate now.

Centered around stuttering, reverb-drenched beats, buzzing bass synths, the Diaz Sisters soulful and impassioned delivery, the Ibeyi take on “Rise Above” still calls out the rich and powerful, who control us — and young people’s desire to stand up and make a new, fairer world. BERWYN delivers a fiery guest verse in which he says “if the revolution is now, I’m the first to join in the fight!” The collaboration between the JOVM mainstays and BERWYN manages to make a vital connection between punk rock, hip-hop and Black Lives Matter — reminding the listener that the struggles of punks in the 80s are the pretty much the same as BLM today.

“We read the lyrics and we immediately felt their relevance to how we felt about the world in its current state,” Lisa-Kainde Diaz explain sin press notes. “We got to work on the melody and had the full song done in 5 minutes. Jorja Smith heard the track and told us we had to get BERWYN on the song. We had him by the studio to listen to the full album. I left to make tea, upon returning to the studio BERWYN had already written his verse for “Rise Above,” before he had even finished listening to the album. We knew we had something special, what a gift!”

Lyric Video: Liz Lamere Shares a Brooding, Post-Apocalyptic Single

Liz Lamere is a New York-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, who has had a lengthy career playing drums in several local punk bands — and famously for collaborating with her late partner, the legendary Alan Vega on his solo work for the better part of three decades. 

Lamere finally steps out into the spotlight as a solo artist with her solo debut Keep It Alive. Written and performed entirely by Lamere, Keep It Alive was recorded in the Lower Manhattan apartment she shared with Vega during pandemic-related lockdowns — in the same space where the Suicide frontman constructed his light sculptures. Keeping it a family affair, the album was engineered by Vega and Lamere’s son, Dante Vega Lamere. Keep It Alive was co-produced by Lamere and The Vacant Lots‘ Jared Artaud. 

“There’s something very magical about creating music in the same environment where Alan created his visual art,” Liz Lamere says in press notes. “His energy is pervasive and is inevitably infused in the recordings.” She continues “ We were living through unprecedented times and Keep It Alive took adversity and uncertainty and turned it into a message of resilience and empowerment.”

The album’s material reportedly courses with the bold and defiant energy that motivated a young Lamere through her early double life as a Wall Street lawyer by day and a downtown New York musician, before she met and fell in love with Vega. Her relationship with Vega led to her becoming his manager, creative foil and keyboardist on his solo work including albums like Deuce AvenuePower On To Zero HourNew RaceionDugong Prang2007Station and IT, as well as the posthumously released, lost album Mutator, which led to the Vega Vault, which she curates with Jared Artaud. 

After Vega’s death in July 2016, Lamere found it cathartic to write down thoughts and observations in notebooks. Simultaneously, she and Artaud had started working together on overseeing the mastering of IT and the production and mixing of Mutator. During this very busy period, the pair discussed working together on her own solo material. 

Keep It Alive is a homage to a song on her late husband’s New Raceion that has a deep and significant meaning for her. It was one of the key lines she would chant on stage, becoming a staple of their live performances together. The main theme and vision of the album is preserving your own inner fire. “Alan always encouraged me to make my own music, and I’ve waited until the time was right as I’ve been dedicated to preserving Alan’s vision and building his legacy,” Lamere says. 

Last month, I wrote about Keep It Alive‘s first single, “Lights Out,” a swaggering banger featuring tweeter and woofer rattling 808s, glistening and melodic synth washes paired with Lamere’s coolly delivered boxing and fighting metaphors. While centered around a gritty and familiar, in-your-face, New York aggression, “Lights Out” is an upbeat, life-affirming song that will give you the energy to keep on fighting the necessary and good fight. 

“’Lights Out’ was the very first track I wrote,” Lamere says in press notes. “You write about what you know. It’s boxing themed. When you step in the ring your life is literally on the line. ‘Let your hands go’ is a boxing term and my mantra for going full tilt in whatever I’ve set out to do.” 

Keep It Alive‘s second and latest single “Freedom’s Last Call” is a brooding and cinematic track centered around thumping industrial beats, jagged and ominous synth arpeggios and a menacing bass line paired with Lamere’s icy delivery. Sonically, “Freedom’s Last Call” sounds as though it could have been part of the Blade Runner soundtrack — or the soundtrack of almost any John Carpenter film.

“This track emerged from the post-apocalyptic vibe around all the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and the political, social and media-driven upheaval and divisiveness,” Lamere explains. “Uncertainty of certainty. Freedom is the most elemental part of the human condition, which is now being assaulted from so many directions. The song is a call for unity and redemption, and about having one shot to keep hope, humanity and free will alive.”  

Keep It Alive is slated for May 20, 2022 release through In The Red.

Lyric Video: Ellevator Shares Slow-Burning “Party Trick”

Hamilton, Ontario-based indie rock outfit Ellevator — Nabi Sue Bersche (vocals), Tyler Bersche (guitar) and Elliott Gwynne (bass, synths) — have received attention nationally and elsewhere for a sound and approach that draws equally from late-aughts guitar music, post-rock, U2Peter GabrielKate BushFeistSpoon and Death Cab for Cutie and paired with lean, razor sharp hooksand Bersche’s earnest, pop star-like lyrics. Thematically their work touches upon power, love and loss from lived-in, personal reflections and experiences.

The Hamilton-based outfit’s self-titled EP amassed over a million streams across all of the digital streaming platforms. Adding to a growing profile, the members of Ellevator toured across North America with Our Lady PeaceMatthew GoodBANNERS, Cold War Kids, JOVM mainstay Rich AucoinDear RougeBishop BriggsArkells and Amber Run

The Hamilton-based outfit’s long-awaited, full-length debut, the Chris Walla-produced The Words You Spoke Still Move Me is slated for a May 6, 2022 release through  Arts & Crafts. The 12-song album reportedly sees the band documenting universal experiences like existential longing, romantic power struggles, the never-ending work of true self-discovery and the deeply personal and highly specific — i.e., Nabi Sue Bersche’s experiences entering into and leaving a religious cult.

In the lead-up to the album’s release next month, I’ve managed to write about two of the album’s released singles:

Easy,” a song that revealed a band that not only making a bold decided step forward in their sound and approach, but a band embracing that they’re a rock band with a balance of deliberate craftsmanship, earnest and lived-in lyrics, enormous hooks and raw, passionate performances with a slick studio polish that reminded me of 80s pop and deDeep Sea Diver‘s impressive Impossible Weight

“Easy” draws directly from Nabi Sue Bershe’s life: For a period of her life, the Ellevator frontwoman was a member of a religious cult, and the song is a rumination on the good and evil things we are raised to believe without question. “I was raised in the world of charismatic Christianity – an offshoot of Pentecostalism,” Ellevator’s Nabi Sue Bersche explained. “God was magic and prophetic ecstasies happened every Sunday. As a child, I spoke in tongues and prayed until my body swayed with a gentle force like wind knocking me backward. A deep and abiding love of the natural world took hold of me. I witnessed firsthand the wild power of music – how it could uplift, ensnare, console, inspire.

“When I was 17 I moved to the other side of the world and joined what would most accurately be described as a cult. I prayed for strangers I met in parking lots. I shut my eyes and read the dappled light between my lashes like tea leaves that could divine the future. Vulnerability was a badge in that community so I learned to overshare. Teachings were given in the language of freedom while the stiff hand of purity reduced my body to a shameful temptation. Growing up like that gave me a love of music, a nose for bullshit, and a lot to unravel. This song is about the good and evil things we are raised to believe. I was held captive by an ideology that severely limited my life and my perspective of the world around me. It’s a process I’m still in the middle of, this work of extraction.”

Sacred Heart” continued a run of slickly produced yet dramatic, radio rock with enormous, arena rock-like hooks, earnest and lived-in lyrics that to my ears reminds me of John Mellencamp, Rod Stewart’s “Young Turks” and Stevie Nicks, thank sin part to an expansive arrangement featuring slashing power chords, twinkling keys and Nabi Sue Bersche’s yearning vocals. “Sacred Heart” details swooning and urgent young love in its gutlessness, passion, fearlessness and uncertainty.

“This one’s a love song about how intimacy and deep knowing can make it feel like there’s nothing left to discover, and choosing to push on anyway in search of new depths, “Ellevator’s Nabi Sue Bersche explains. “Ty [Tyler Bersche] (guitar) and I got married on a cold spring morning when I was 22 and he was 19. There wasn’t much chance to sell each other on our own myths, to be the mysterious stranger from outta town: we wrote our origin story together. Learning to love each other better has been a strange journey and the great gift of my life.”

The Words You Spoke Still Move Me‘s latest single “Party Trick” is a slow-burning and atmospheric ballad that manages to accurately captures the insecurity, anxiety and flightiness of a young person still figuring out who they are and what they are; so they spend their time adopting and discarding identities, interests and beliefs until they maybe find something that suits them. While drawing from personal experience, the song captures a universal experience.

“A friend said to me that being in a band means never growing up,” Ellevator’s Nabi Sue Bersche says in press notes. “It’s easy to feel like Peter Pan on tour, all the trappings of adulthood a hundred truck stops and a thousand miles in the rearview. I started writing this song to my teenage self: a flighty, insecure kid posturing confidence. I’d jump around to all the different cliques like a self-styled Ferris Bueller, leaving just before friendships could settle in. Being on the road brought out those same old tendencies: keep it all on the level, don’t go too deep. Driving down the highway, floating through the hall/Everything is different, nothing’s changed at all.”

Lyric Video: Nashville’s Pauline Andrés Shares Sultry New Bop, “Speed Racer”

Nashville-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer and sound engineer Pauline Andrés is a true global citizen: Andrés was born in Eastern Europe, spent her childhood in France — and as an adult, she spent a stint living in Berlin.

Initially known as an Americana artist, Andrés recently decided to shift gears and focus on her other favorite genre of music — electro pop. “Speed Racer,” Andrés latest single continues a run of slickly produced, lush, retro-futuristic bops centered around glistening and oscillating synths, a sinuous bass line paired with the Nashville-based artist’s smoky crooning. Underneath the slick production though is a careful and deliberate attention to craft, revealed through razor sharp hooks and playfully coquettish lyrics.

“I let the intro roll a measure more than your usual EDM template. I put my bridge before the second chorus. I kept those lines that made everything work together. Because that’s what’s allowing the song to be its true self,” Andrés says about the production choices behind her latest single. “I wanted to give it space…I didn’t make this song for any algorithm or radio. I made it for grown ups driving at night and needing the perfect soundtrack for their ride. I think that turned out pretty good.”

The accompanying official, lyric video was shot exclusively at night in Nashville, follows Andrés driving around town in a convertible. Fitting for a late night, drive sort of anthem ain’t it?

Lyric Video: Rising Pop Artist Emmrose Shares an Empowering Anthem

Emma Torrison is a 18 year-old singer/songwriter, pop artist and creative mastermind behind the rising solo recording project Emmrose. Torrison can trace the origins of her professional music career to when she wrote her first song in math class about four years ago.

Since then, Torrison has gone on to release 13 singles. along with a her critically applauded debut EP Hopeless Romantics, all of which have helped her establish a sound and approach that has been described by some as a mesh between Adele and Florence and the Machine and a bit of classic, minimalist pop and progressive pop.

Currently, the young and rising pop artist is attending college here in NYC while working on material for her sophomore EP — and she’s working a small collection of t-shirts, bags and clothing with a team of young fashion design students.

Torrison’s latest single “Run” is a hook-driven and accessible electro pop banger centered around skittering and blown out tweeter and woofer rattling beats, sinuous bass lines, glistening synth arpeggios and the young pop artist’s remarkably self-assured vocal delivery. But the song is underpinned by an encouraging and anthemic message of empowerment to those, who desperately need to leave a toxic, dysfunctional and abusive relationship.

“‘Run’ was such a powerful song to write… I wanted to create a breakup anthem for anyone who has been or is currently in an abusive relationship,” Torrison explains. “I wanted it to be an inspiration.”

Lyric Video: Hamilton’s Ellevator Share Swooning and Anthemic “Sacred Heart”

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada-based indie rock outfit Ellevator — currently Nabi Sue Bersche (vocals), Tyler Bersche (guitar) and Elliott Gwynne (bass, synths) — have received attention in their native Canada and elsewhere for a developing and honing a sound and approach that draws from late-aughts guitar music, post-rock, U2Peter GabrielKate BushFeistSpoon and Death Cab for Cutie paired with lean, razor sharp hooks, sweeping crescendos and Bersche’s sultry, pop star vocals singing increasingly earnest lyrics, which thematically touch upon power, love and loss from deeply lived-in, personal reflections and experiences.

Ellevator’s 2018 self-titled EP amassed over a million streams across the digital streaming platforms. Adding to a growing profile. the band toured across North America with the likes of Our Lady PeaceMatthew GoodBANNERS, Cold War Kids, JOVM mainstay Rich AucoinDear RougeBishop BriggsArkells and Amber Run

The Hamilton-based outfit’s long-awaited, full-length debut, the Chris Walla-produced The Words You Spoke Still Move Me is slated for a May 6, 2022 release through  Arts & Crafts. The 12-song album reportedly see the band documenting universal experiences like existential longing, romantic power struggles, the never-ending work of true self-discovery and the personal and highly specific – in particular, Nabi Sub Bersche’s experiences entering into and escaping a religious cult.

Late last year, I wrote about The Words You Spoke Still Move Me‘s first single, “Easy,” a song that revealed a band that not only making a bold decided step forward in their sound and approach, but a band embracing that they’re a rock band with the band balancing deliberate craftsmanship, earnest and lived-in lyrics, enormous hooks and raw and passionate performances with a slick studio polish in a way that reminded me of 80s pop and Deep Sea Diver‘s impressive Impossible Weight

“Easy” draws directly from Nabi Sue Bershe’s life: For a period of her life, the Ellevator frontwoman was a member of a religious cult, and the song is a rumination on the good and evil things we are raised to believe without question. “I was raised in the world of charismatic Christianity – an offshoot of Pentecostalism,” Ellevator’s Nabi Sue Bersche explained. “God was magic and prophetic ecstasies happened every Sunday. As a child, I spoke in tongues and prayed until my body swayed with a gentle force like wind knocking me backward. A deep and abiding love of the natural world took hold of me. I witnessed firsthand the wild power of music – how it could uplift, ensnare, console, inspire.

“When I was 17 I moved to the other side of the world and joined what would most accurately be described as a cult. I prayed for strangers I met in parking lots. I shut my eyes and read the dappled light between my lashes like tea leaves that could divine the future. Vulnerability was a badge in that community so I learned to overshare. Teachings were given in the language of freedom while the stiff hand of purity reduced my body to a shameful temptation. Growing up like that gave me a love of music, a nose for bullshit, and a lot to unravel. This song is about the good and evil things we are raised to believe. I was held captive by an ideology that severely limited my life and my perspective of the world around me. It’s a process I’m still in the middle of, this work of extraction.”

The album’s second and latest single “Sacred Heart” continues a run of slickly produced yet dramatic, radio rock with enormous, arena rock-like hooks, earnest and lived-in lyrics that to my ears brings John Mellencamp, Rod Stewart’s “Young Turks” and Stevie Nicks to mind, thanks in part to an expansive arrangement featuring slashing power chords, twinkling keys, and Nabi Sue Bersche’s yearning and plaintive vocals. At its core, the song details a swooning, young love in its guilelessness, passion, fearlessness and uncertainty. (From experience love — particularly young love — is all of that and then some.)

“This one’s a love song about how intimacy and deep knowing can make it feel like there’s nothing left to discover, and choosing to push on anyway in search of new depths, “Ellevator’s Nabi Sue Bersche explains. “Ty [Tyler Bersche] (guitar) and I got married on a cold spring morning when I was 22 and he was 19. There wasn’t much chance to sell each other on our own myths, to be the mysterious stranger from outta town: we wrote our origin story together. Learning to love each other better has been a strange journey and the great gift of my life.”

Directed and shot by Cam Veitch, the accompanying lyric video for “Sacred Heart” features intimately shot footage of the band playing the song live. “We shot, edited, and delivered the whole thing in less than 24 hrs,” Nabi Sue Bersche adds. “We’ve made a bunch of videos that I’m proud of but this one touches something special: we wanted to show what it feels like to play live as Ellevator, in all its sublime chaos, and I think we captured the lightning.”

Lyric Video: JOVM Mainstays No Swoon Share Introspective New Single

Formed back in 2016, JOVM mainstays No Swoon — Tasha Abbott (vocals, guitar) and Zack Nestel-Patt (synths, baas) — have developed an established sound that sees the pair meshing elements of dream pop, shoegaze, post-punk and ethereal wave through two releases, 2018’s EP 1 and 2019’s ’s Jorge Elbrecht-produced, self-titled full-length debut. 

Much like countless others across the world, the COVID-19 pandemic, threw the the lives and plans of the JOVM mainstays into disarray” their planned tour to support their full-length debut had to be scrapped entirely. After spending the past five years in Brooklyn, the duo relocated to Los Angeles. And understandably, spending over a year in quarantine-imposed isolation forced the pair to step back and think about their lives in new ways — and to examine the intricacies of going through life as we know it.

The duo managed fro released a couple of singles during the pandemic, including the Siamese Dream era Smashing Pumpkins meets Slowdive like Again,” a single that marked massive, life-altering transitions for the duo: their aforementioned return back West paired with a reworked sound and approach.

As the JOVM mainstays explained in press notes, “This song is about when days begin and end with no real definition. About being stuck in the loop of our life and we can’t get out. It may come to no surprise that this song was written early on in the Pandemic. Before everything shut down, I (Tasha) was constantly moving: work, music, sleep, etc., and being at stand-still all of a sudden was definitely strange (on top of the already terror and stress of the pandemic).”

Interestingly, “Again” will appear on the band’s highly-anticipated sophomore album Take Your Time. Slated for an April 8, 2022 release, the lion share of Take Your Time was recorded by the band in Western Massachusetts, amidst the isolation of pandemic related quarantine — with the band’s Nestel-Patt taking up engineering duties during the initial recording sessions. The album features guest spots from longtime collaborator Jon Smith (drums), along with Furrows‘ and Olden Yolk’s Peter Wagner (guitar). Jake Aaron contributed some additional production and Chris Coady mixed the album, pushing the material into something otherworldly. 

Take Your Time‘s material was conceived and written during both personal and global transitions and turmoil — but while celebrating a joyful acceptance of the paths that have lead each of us to where we are right now. About the album’s themes, No Swoon’s Abbott contends, “We are so hard on ourselves for decisions we made years ago. I have plenty of regrets, but I also see it as a process, and it’s ok that I didn’t realize the hopes and dreams of 20-year old me. What did she know anyways?” 

Last month, I wrote about Take Your Time‘s first official single “Besides.” Centered around Abbott’s plaintive and breathy falsetto, a propulsive rhythm section and intertwined buzzing power chords and twinkling, reverb-drenched synths, “Besides” sonically nods at Beach House, but as the band’s Tasha Abbott explains, the song was inspired by a wild, enigmatic dream she once had in which, while exploring a mysterious cavern, she stumbled upon a secret apparently blissful cult with ambiguous intentions.

“I have some really weird dreams,” Abbott said in press notes. “They are often these wide-ranging sci-fi stories. This song is part 2 of the same dream that inspired a song on our first record ‘Don’t wake up, wake up‘. That dream had ended with meandering into a cave that turned out to be the home to a cult where everyone looked the same and seemed very ‘happy.’ Though, obviously they were not very happy because it was a cult. I eventually got out.”

“Wait to See,” Take Your Time‘s brooding third and latest single is centered around a maelstrom of synths, driving percussion, blown out bass with Abbott’s ethereal vocals floating over the mix, to create a mesmerizing song that’s simultaneously bruising and dreamily introspective.

“This song is about growing up,” No Swoon’s Abbott says in press notes. “
We’re talking to our younger selves who had very specific dreams and ideas of how our lives would pan out. But as we all know, the hopes and dreams we had at 15 are usually not our realities when we grow up.. We could look back and be upset that we didn’t become who we had hoped to be, or we could relish the new ideas and new dreams, and be ok with where we are. This song is about how looking back now, you can see the path that led to where we are now and how we wish we could tell our younger selves to be kind to who we will grow up to be.”