The “cry hard, dance harder” mentality that’s begun to creep its way into pop music is one of my favorite approaches to music in general. Jack Antonoff of Bleachers has built an entire career aroud this mindset and has talked about it extensively in interviews. To paraphrase, he often romanticises the idea of dancing to the point of exhaustion and having an all-around good time at one of his shows, but he also hopes that the stories he’s telling in both the music and lyrics are poignant enough that they creep up on you when you spend time alone with them. Today, I’m excited to share a song from a band that lives and breathes that mentality– pulling influence from acts like Death Cab For Cutie, Braid, and Cyndi Lauper in the form of Nashville, TN’s best-kept secret, Pale Houses.
I couldn’t be more excited to share the first single from their upcoming Songs of the Isolation EP, a song that sounds like The Postal Service had they existed in the year 1988, “The Ocean Bed.” The track is rich with the kind of delicate and dreamy synth that immediately transports you to a high school auditorium packed full of sweaty, nervous teenagers dancing awkwardly around each other. Thankfully, it’s done so tastefully that it doesn’t cheapen the song, instead giving lyrics like “You say you want me out of here/but my heart is anchored down/you’ll have to drain the ocean bed/and leave me there for dead” the kind of adorable heart that’s buried in shows like Freaks & Geeks or Everything Sucks!
When asked about the song, vocalist Aaron Robinson says: “I wrote and demoed The Ocean Bed as a droning, mellow tune. I like to think that the band picked up on the longing and tension in the words and transformed it into the pop anthem that it needed to become.”
You can stream “The Ocean Bed” below.
Songs of the Isolation is out 3/30.