I have a personal aversion to just about any and all dream pop. In my mind it’s associated very heavily with female vocalists who also play bass, bland backing bands, and clean guitar over mildly interesting drum grooves and maybe some keyboards in there to fill the gaps.
Seeing dozens of iterations of this whole deal gave me a kind of musical PTSD, and to this day I’m especially wary of any band that fits the above description.
Lucky for me, I didn’t see Lomelda as just better than the rest.
The band is really just one gal, Hannah Read, a dynamite songwriter who actually has something to day.
2015’s Forever is the standout record. The tunes don’t exactly smack you in the face with innovation. Lomelda’s music doesn’t really work like that. It sneaks up on you. Slowly and carefully, it worms its way into your brain and makes a nest there. The songs build off each other beautifully, due in part to the fact that, yes, a lot of the instrumentation is almost identical. We’re talkin’ guitar, bass, drums, maybe a few effects thrown in for seasoning here and there. Every once in a while they’ll break out that old post-rock trick of making the whole song one big crescendo, capping it off with dramatic guitar shreds and pained singing.
In my usual way, it took me a good while to actually listen to the words. But when I finally did I was delighted. Here come a few quick samples that sound great even outside of the music:
“At the end of the day I just want to hear a whisper / Over the shivers from the scratching of a love song / At the end of the day i just want to watch the sky fire / Burn to ashes like a prophecy for us all.”
“I first felt the fear that phantom summer when my grandmother died / I lived in her house for six months after always waiting for the sunrise / I didn’t know the world had ended and left without saying goodbye.”
“Please don’t be mad at me / And don’t be as sad as me / You’ve got lots of life left.”
I never thought that dream pop and I would get together. And we almost didn’t. But you can never tell how it’ll all shake out. And thanks to a talented Texas songwriter, I’m now just a little bit more open-minded, a little more prepared for slow-moving mornings when I want to remember that beautiful music is still being made.