We spend a lot of time thinking about what makes us happy. We try to do the things that make us feel good, surround ourselves with those who uplift us, listen to the music that pumps us up. When you think about happiness as methodically as that, you can’t help but wonder why we seem to get it wrong time after time.
In truth, happiness really isn’t that formulaic. Cavern Company, the Oklahoma-based indie trio, make that clear on their emotional and contemplative EP, So This Is Happiness. Yes, we may spend a lot of time trying to make ourselves happy, grasping at material things that gratify and give us pleasure—I, for one, will never shade a little self-love. But at the core of it, happiness isn’t something that just happens to you—happiness is about being honest with yourself, recognizing everything that’s inside of you and still pushing forward and forcing yourself to be better. When it all boils down, isn’t that what self-love is really about?
“Enough?” is essentially Cavern Company’s anthem of self-love and honesty. The opening tune of the single is one that isn’t unfamiliar, which instantly puts the listener at ease as they settle into the soothing indie pop soundscape. That isn’t to say that “Enough?” isn’t unique, though. “Where do I find peace of mind? / Get alone talking to myself / Change of pace I held my tongue / Take time to fix myself,” lead singer Zach Shomaker sings over a simple guitar hook that quickly descends into a wall of energetic overdrive that lights up the song. The melody is punchy and carefree, but the words reveal deep self-reflection.
Shomaker continues his contemplative journey as he nears the chorus. “I say what you want me to / I’m a puppet on a string only move how I’m supposed to.” As he muses over his past behavior, he rejects those who aim to control him. His voice crescendos with the band as they finally reach the chorus. “Every time, every time / Every time I back myself away / It gets so loud shut it out,” Shomaker exclaims affirmatively. “Where are you now? Where are you now? / Start to see you as a daydream / It’s all so loud breathe in and out / Step forward light and carefree.” We tend to romanticize the idea of happiness, idealizing it in a way that often makes it seem unattainable. But if you take of the rose-colored glasses and look within, it becomes simple, light, and carefree.
“Enough?” never loses its momentum or optimistic drive. Shomaker’s vocals shine along with Joshua Warren’s drums and Kole Mclaren’s guitars, combining to create an upbeat indie pop-rock song reminiscent of the sound of Phoenix and The Killers that is sure to brighten your day. Cavern Company’s road to happiness is clearly defined and deeply rooted in self-understanding and honesty. Shomaker sings with such candor and conviction that I have no choice but to take his word for it. “I’ll keep on breathing for now,” he promises. “I’ll keep on breathing for now!”