New indie album catchy, thoughtful

Samantha Romberger January 25, 2018 0

The second album of indie sensation Sir Sly, titled “Don’t You Worry, Honey,” was released June 30, 2017. The band formed in Los Angeles, California as a trio, and members Landon Jacobs, Jason Suwito and Hayden Coplen have remained together since 2013.

The band is generally categorized as indie-pop, although many of the band’s songs have a notable R&B inspiration. Some songs are catchy sing-alongs, while others are thoughtful ballads.

“High,” the first single on the album, has received a fair amount of attention. It spent three weeks on the number-2 spot of Sirius XM’s Alt 18 countdown and appeared in the credits of the movie “Happy Death Day.” The content of the song is exactly what you might guess – yet remarkably unconventional.

The opening sound is otherworldly, resembling what it might feel like to float in space. As the song builds, it becomes more energetic, yet retains its ethereal quality. Jacobs’ lyrics are all about drugs but in a way that is mostly subtle and poetic. It is one of the most intelligent and interesting songs about this increasingly popular topic.

The speaker recalls “lying there in rapture on the bathroom floor,” until, all of a sudden, he finds himself “along for the ride as I’m taking flight.” This is one of those rare songs that feels relatable and lovable even for those who have never been in a similar situation. The accompanying video is a must-watch of choreographed dancing and over-the-top sets.

Next is the much gentler, more serious track “Change,” about loneliness and promises of personal growth. It has an R&B vibe with a sprinkle of indie-pop. It’s perfect for swaying back and forth while getting ready in the morning – speaking from experience.

Re-energizing the album is “&Run,” with an infectious baseline and an unfairly catchy chorus. A song about vague mistakes and regrets, its repeating line is all about running into the setting sun. The music video is hilarious and clever.

“Altar,” a personal favorite, is a great breakup anthem, recalling the band’s strong R&B feel. Anyone who has ever been in a faulty relationship can probably relate; the song is about glorifying someone, worshipping at that person’s altar and unhealthily ignoring his or her flaws.

The speaker resolves, “I won’t worship at your shrine again. / And no, I do not want to be your friend.” A gospel chorus joins in for the last verse, adding depth to the otherwise simple song.

The next single, “Fun,” is a difficult one to find online, but is worth a little digging. After that is “Astronaut.” It starts slowly, with the same other-worldly feelings of “High” (as well as the same subject matter). Once the first chorus kicks in, the guitar line becomes vibrant and gripping. Jacobs sings about watching his life from a bird’s eye, discovering a paper-thin God and feeling like an astronaut in space.

Another difficult single to uncover online, “2am” is a ballad in the electronic, indie sense of the word. It is psychedelic and glowing with a transcendental energy. “Trippin” is an uncharacteristic party song about meeting an alluring girl at a stranger’s house and “groovin on the floor.”

Arguably the most R&B inspired song on the album, “Headfirst” is repetitive, soft and introspective. The bridge is a spoken-word reflection on being unable to fall in love. It is a beautiful, criminally underrated single.

Lastly is “Oh Mama,” a piece that slowly grows in intensity. By the end of the song, the foot-tapping is completely involuntary, yet the lyrics are heartbreaking.

A gospel chorus joins in for the last refrains to insist that “one day I’m gonna sing with you again, Oh mama.” The song incorporates a voicemail from Jacobs’ late mother.

All in all, “Don’t You Worry, Honey” is an album that illustrates the complexity and elastic nature of Sir Sly. With every new single, fans are never quite sure what to expect. One thing remains constant, however: the band is a unique and talented voice in the chorus of modern music.

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