By: Bridie Beamish
On Oct. 28, The Backseat Lovers, an indie rock band from Utah, released their second album, Waiting to Spill. Their new release, consisting of 10 songs, is significantly different from their previous album When We Were Friends. While their 2019 album primarily features upbeat and light-hearted songs, Waiting to Spill includes tracks with a heavy reliance on instrumentals and contains much deeper lyrics about nostalgia, growth, and peace.
The opening track, Silhouette, is almost entirely instrumental. With only eight lines throughout the entire six-minute song, the band emphasizes the group as a whole, representing their chemistry rather than highlighting one individual. With numerous sonic experiments, lead vocalist Joshua Harmon describes Silhouette as the “most intricate track.”
My personal favorites, Close Your Eyes and Morning in the Aves, share the most thematic similarities to the band’s first album. With somber lyrics about getting older and undergoing growth, Close Your Eyes successfully juxtaposes lyrical depth with upbeat, experimental instrumentation. A moment in his childhood bathroom inspired Harmon to write the tune. Inspired by a melancholy winter morning, Morning in the Aves shares a message about the importance of making time for oneself and slowing down to focus on the little things every once in a while.
Slowing Down, one of the album’s most popular tracks, exemplifies the band’s musical growth and creativity. Much more raw and upsetting than the previous songs, The Backseat Lovers wrote Slowing Down while on a writing retreat in California’s mountains. Harmon declared “the song was born out of feelings of fear, faded dreams seeping into our mornings, and a personal worry that I was slowing down the person I loved.”
The closing song of the album, Viciously Lonely — inspired by a heavy rain storm Harmon witnessed while playing his guitar from the safety of a porch — further enhances the album’s sorrowful vibe and depth. The song expresses the loneliness that comes with the loss of one’s youth and describes the feeling of comfort Harmon experienced as he peacefully watched the tumultuous and chaotic storm. The track also includes an audio recording of the rainstorm to encapsulate that feeling. A truly beautiful melody, Viciously Lonely leaves listeners pondering the wonderful, thought-provoking message.
By using children’s toys as percussion and Altoid boxes filled with rice grains as instruments, the Backseat Lover’s creative genius shines through Waiting to Spill. Building on efforts from their initial album and allowing in-the-moment inspiration to take the lead over time, the band exemplifies that all good things come to those who wait; after awaiting the sophomore album’s three-year creation process, Waiting to Spill is everything I had hoped it would be and more.
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