tomberlin – “seventeen”

– featured image courtesy of philip cosores – 

sarah beth tomberlin’s output under her surname yielded last year’s at weddings, a stunning collection of songs that examined vulnerability and youth through a sparse sonic lens.  on august 10th, saddle creek will reissue the album with three new tracks alongside its original seven.

one of those new tracks, “seventeen,” is a wistful, finger-picked love song, acoustic guitar arpeggios lilting in time with tomberlin’s lead vocal.  this particular love appears unrequited, as tomberlin searches for any shred of shared intimacy in questions like “my life has always been a kind of secret / can you keep it?” but is ultimately rebuffed, her sentiments lingering unchanged years later.

accompanying “seventeen” is an appropriately pastoral music video, filmed in rural stretches of southern illinois and featuring gorgeous slowed-down shots of tomberlin with her dog.  a new type of companionship surfaces in the visuals that is aching in its own regard – time with any beloved animal is fleeting – with the track’s orchestral swells contributing to its cinematic nature.  absorb the audio/visual presentation of “seventeen,” below.

listen to a new song from chad valley

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photo courtesy of lucy bridger

chad valley is the moniker of oxford singer-songwriter hugo manuel, who’s prepping the release of his sophomore album entirely new blue, out october 2nd via cascine.  firmly anchoring the final third of the album is “seventeen,” a tender ballad that doubles as a gut-wrenching reminder of how devastating a relationship’s end can be.  empathy is instantaneous, as manuel laments “my life is littered with my own mistakes / the memories encircled are a waste” in the song’s opening, but “seventeen” feels increasingly therapeutic as more instruments are slowly guided into the texture, as manuel gradually moves towards self-reconciliation protected by an army of synthesizers.  still, as the final line suggests, some semblance of longing never fully disappears.  listen to “seventeen” below.