Comprised of brothers Chris and Jon Chu and Julian Harmon, the Brooklyn-based trio of POP ETC, spent the better part of 2014 in the studio writing and recording new material. And the first single from those sessions “Running in Circles” is comprised of twinkling guitar chords, layers of shimmering and undulating synths and propulsive percussion paired with plaintive vocals. And while being clearly inspired by 80s synth pop, the song displays a very contemporary sound as it bears a resemblance to the likes of St. Lucia and Bear In Heaven, in the fact that although it’s very direct and emotional, the track possesses a very clean, crisp sound with an infectious hook — but underneath the surface there’s something a bit ragged, as though you can hear the song’s narrator’s heart slowly breaking along with his sense of confusion.
As the band’s Chris Chu has mentioned in the press notes for this single the song is lyrically about losing track of where you are and where your life is taking you — and that should be familiar sensation for countless people regardless of their age, especially around your late 20s and early 30s.
The band recently released a lyric video for the song that features a man dramatically performing martial arts as the song’s lyrics flash around him. And interestingly enough, the man’s movements are so fluid and so beautiful that it looks as though he were dancing.