Although genres tend to be associated with the music released in specific decades, this hasn’t stopped artists from dipping their fingers into the past to create modern hits. Some artists, however, take full advantage of the availability of information that we have nowadays and fully indulge in that sound of the past. With so many artists trying so hard to perfectly recreate that 1960’s sound, there are bound to be many who miss the mark and few who hit it. With it being such a specific sound, especially when you get into the sub-genre of psychedelic rock, things sometimes get too particular to reach their full potential. Thankfully, with Tristan Jarvis’ song, “Seclude,” we are treated to an example of that sound done right.
As soon as I hit play on this song, I knew that I was about to be transported back many decades. The snare pattern that leads us into the song is something that I associated with many songs from the 1960’s, so I had an idea of what was to follow. Without disappointing, the song immediately follows up with a lo-fi instrumental which is acoustically driven. The melody being sung is reminiscent of something psychedelic, especially taking into account the various harmonies which are strung through the track. The song follows a very specific sound, which I could only think to label as lo-fi psychedelic. To me, the song gives off strong Beatles vibes, but in terms of other modern artists, those whose sound comes the closest are MGMT and Foxygen.
Looking towards the lyrical content and general message of the song, we can see a pretty straight forward approach. Although many times with psychedelic music, the lyrics can be pure nonsense, basically leaving everything up to interpretation, this song comes out with a standard but personal message and sticks to it. From the first verse, Jarvis sings, “When I wake and I’m feeling alarmed / Oh, ain’t this life so charmed? / I’m going out like that old light bulb / Oh, ain’t the dark so cold?” With the mood immediately set, we can see the theme of depression and internalizing emotions play out throughout the rest of the song. Later in the song he sings, “I need something greater than myself / Feeling feelings that have never been felt / Isolation to the Nth degree / If I’m always worried, will I ever be free?” So, while not exactly showing any sense of progression throughout the various verses, the song does stick to its underlying message without wavering.
The final section of the song ends on the lyrics, “My expectations grow less by the hour / I physically couldn’t be any louder.” After that, we are treated to a full-sounding instrumental outro including harmonies, more prominent drums, and a repeating lead-guitar part. After realizing its full potential, the song ends at just the right moment, not overstaying its welcome or leaving too soon. With its instrumental reminiscent of one of my favorite decades, as well as lyrics which are straightforward and relatable to many, Tristan Jarvis has successfully crafted a personal song which still exudes a specific vibe with “Seclude.” I believe that this song should, compared to the bands I mentioned earlier, stand up tall and proud as it exceeds expectations and draws me in to continue listening to it.