By: Hope Ankney
The wave of emotions one feels after the end of a relationship can be overbearing and confusing. It’s conflicting memories attached to feelings that sustain its life force even when it aches to breathe. It can be perplexing to grieve a breakup. If it becomes apparent that a relationship isn’t going to work out, why must one mourn it? Possibly because it’s human nature. The mind applies the ending of something to the death of it- especially when it revolves around the overpowering emotion of love. People are programmed to shield and nurture what they hold valuable to them, and the process of grieving is just the innate way of telling the mind that the love was valuable.
That’s how one feels as they immerse themselves into the forthcoming third album, Slow Buzz, by Remember Sports. A band consisting of vocalist/guitarist Carmen Perry, guitarist Jack Washburn, bassist Catherine Dwyer, and newest addition drummer Conner Perry that is notorious for their illustriously constructed lyrics and ability to make the listener let loose to their gritty sound.
Slow Buzz, out May 18th on Father/Daughter Records blatantly revolves around a breakup. It is the musical release of deeply painful and personal emotions that Carmen records at the battered close of a good relationship. Her writing throughout the album is riddled with vulnerability and artfulness almost like becoming privy to the inner-corners of her relationship memoir. With brash guitars and rowdy percussion the record narrates between both gloom and glee. Slow Buzz is a hodge-podge of contrasting vibes that resonate with the out-of-balance energy a breakup brings. The beats of happiness are drowned out by the painful melancholy of packing yourself up and away from someone, allowing the album to be full of tracks that universally pull at the heartstrings.
“Otherwise” opens the album with a slow but steady tone attached to Perry’s soft vocals. The track soon swells to a booming climax centered around thrashing instrumentals that carries the sensation of the rest of the project. The contrast between the gentle intro and the roaring end paired with the repetitive lyrics “At least i’m okay otherwise” foreshadows the personal fragility Carmen experiences throughout Slow Buzz.
“No Going Back” and the closing track “Unwell” are my personal highlights on Slow Buzz. Both lingering on the edge of refined, raw, and mellow, the two stand-out alongside their spirited and invigorating sisters by offering the isolated thoughts that bumble through a relationship’s expiration.
“No Going Back” starts quick with its catchy beat. Perry notes early on that she’s not who they’d thought she’d be as the song chronicles a relationship after its end. With longing lyrics like “back to the warm sad place in my chest where i miss you like a sunset,” and “you’re not coming back” Perry connects with everyone who has dealt with the aftermath of a soured breakup. At the song’s end, her vocals are strained, emphasizing the lyrics she’s belting, clearly depicting the pain the song exudes. But, throughout the sorrow of the track, she delivers two great lines “When you were the one and i wasn’t okay // If you’re not the one and i’m still not okay then there’s no going back” that should be printed on merchandise, that’s how hard-hitting they are.
“Unwell” follows suit with a partial acoustic accompaniment but falls on a more self-deprecating tone. Perry blames herself for the demise of the relationship, claiming that good intentions can’t put it back together. Her downturned vocals highlight the inner accusation as halfway through the track it evolves into a jolting mash of guitars and percussion as she is heard crying out “I didn’t mean to ruin everything.” A sorrowful track full of harsh accusations that lives within.
Slow Buzz, through it’s layered theme of woe and joy is luxurious in what it brings to the table. Chronicling love and loss, It focuses heavily on all the fine details of arrangement and production that Remember Sports has perfected over the years. This makes their third installment a bold statement to be reckoned with.