The Sarandons have dropped the soundtrack for your neon urban dream – and it’s called “Lately, I Believe.” The single is the result of a cosmic collaboration between Damian Coleman, Edumund Cummings, Craig Keeney, Phil Skot, and Dave Suchon – all of whom, aside from Skot, participate in the vocals of the production. (Sorry to call you out like that, Skot. Your mind-blowing power on drums makes up for it.) “Lately, I Believe” is a smart, concise anthem for late nights under hazy lights – and it will have no issues keeping your attention.
Talking to that bathroom mirror/It’s a sign of the times
The Sarandons are known for their warm, melting guitar tones as well as their energetic bass and drums. The soundscape of “Lately, I Believe” capitalizes on these strengths in sharp, certain strokes. The drums and keys latch together, each punctuating the other to create a strong grounding force beneath the vocals. The effect is something akin to Spoon – driving, clear-headed, with just a bit of edge. The space between the chorus and the verse is especially lit up by this effect. The bass, keys, and drums fuse together to create a groove that is worthy of headbanging. The sonic aesthetic slips easily into the visual one.
You’re so tongue tied don’t know what to say/I’ve gotta mouth full of words but you’re bored straight away
The music video for “Lately, I Believe,” brings to life the essence of the track, with bright neon visuals and undeniable swagger. The video, which was directed by Kyle Laurin, alternates between various scenes in the city. We see band members singing at a bar – a dancer staring at herself in the mirror – a subway car bustling through the dark. The color palette is drizzled in bright pink, reds, and blues. In the video description, the band members note that the video “takes us back to a time when we’d dress up and head to our favorite venues for a night of live music. But more often than not, we’d arrive and spend far too long capturing the moment instead of enjoying it.” Listeners can see this dichotomy between joy and loss throughout the song, with a specific critique on the modern attention span.
Who knows why it took you so long/I get so damn bored of singing this song
So let’s talk about the idea of “focus” in this song. A primary theme both lyrically and sonically seems to be the struggle of keeping someone’s (a lover? an audience? everyone?) attention. The speaker is “damn bored” of his own song, and the person he speaks to gets “bored straight away.” The music video shows the singer slowly being abandoned by the audience and then his own band mates, leaving him alone on the stage. Yet at the same time the song does everything to keep the listener’s attention – the grounded beats, uplifting tone, and animated textures all stand in stark contradiction to the song’s darker meanings. This multiplicity and theme of transience adds an admirable layer of depth to the track. “Lately, I Believe” is both clever and catchy – a must-listen for your urban daydreams.