Today’s Song: Saskatoon’s Close Talker Stun With “Papier-mâché,” a Cathartic & Charged Indie Rock Reckoning

Close Talker "Papier-mâché" © Nicole Plett
Close Talker "Papier-mâché" © Nicole Plett
Heated, heartfelt, and emotionally charged, Close Talker’s “Papier-mâché” aches with vulnerability and raw fervor as the Saskatchewan trio deliver a sleek, cathartic indie rock upheaval from their darkest, innermost depths.
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Stream: “Papier-mâché” – Close Talker




Nothing hits harder than having your own self-serving life choices thrown back at you,

and on their first single in three years’ time, Close Talker hold a cold, bold mirror up to themselves – and, by extension, their listeners. “Thirty hit me square in the face, but I still can’t seem to get out my way,” lead singer Will Quiring says in an intense moment of introspection and inner reckoning.

Oof.

Heated, heartfelt, and emotionally charged, Close Talker’s “Papier-mâché” aches with vulnerability and raw fervor as the Saskatchewan trio deliver a sleek, cathartic indie rock upheaval from their darkest, innermost depths. This kind of unfiltered, unapologetic self-exposure can be brutal – nobody ever said self-critique is “fun” – and yet, despite its mild tendency toward self-deprecation, this song has an uncanny way of invigorating our ears, refreshing our hearts, and lifting our spirits.

Papier-mâché - Close Talker
Papier-mâché – Close Talker
Yeah you’re moving up
Nothing’s gonna get in your way
The house feels like it’s papier-mâché
Is it enough
The way I’m growing up?
Thirty hit me square in the face
But I still can’t seem to get out my way

Say goodbye to your terrible twenties and welcome in your terrific thirties – the “real” start to modern adulthood, some might say – with a soul-stirring, all-consuming coming-of-age anthem. Close Talker’s Will Quiring, Matthew Kopperud, and Chris Morien skewer themselves, but they resolve to build back better and stronger than ever before on “Papier-mâché,” independently released September 8, 2023 via their own Saskatoon-based indie label, Slow Weather Music.

The lead single off their forthcoming fifth studio album The Sprawl, set for release March 2024, is a beautifully catchy, churning, and charming song reminiscent of bands like Death Cab for Cutie, The National, and Stars: Vulnerable, visceral introspection comes to life through moody hooks and melancholy melodies. It’s all one breathtakingly emotive fever dream that reminds us, yet again, of Close Talker’s preeminence on the indie circuit – even if this is their first new material in three years’ time.

Close Talker
Close Talker is Will Quiring, Matthew Kopperud, and Chris Morien



The song’s chorus offers an especially impassioned climax to all that tension bubbling up in the verses:

So would you settle for us
if you could choose right now?

If you only knew how you could ruin me…

“A year and a half ago, my son was born. His name is James and he completely destroyed me,” drummer Chris Morien tells Atwood Magazine. “It’s a remarkable experience to be living your life in some self-absorbed, care-free bubble, and the next thing you know, the world has entrusted you with a human who needs you to stay alive. Do they know I’ve spent the last 10 years touring in a van eating spitz?”

“And this human has ultimate power over you,” he continues. “Anything they do could make your day, or send you into an anxiety ridden spiral. And the best part is, they are completely unaware of it. “If you only knew how you could ruin me” is just the tip of the iceberg. Your life has changed. Your priorities diminished. And all you want now is for that human to feel loved, while constantly wondering if your love is enough.”

Man you’re such a show-off
Standing with your chest puffed
When’d you get so tough?
Yeah you’re moving up
Is it enough
The way I think I’m holding it down?
Don’t know why you’ve been keeping me around
And now you’ve been asleep for an hour or so
I’m wearin’ the floor where my feet always go
Should I double down on the game
or clean the mess that you made

Or just consider all the little I know?

“Papier-mâché” has many sides, colors, and dimensions; the beauty of Close Talker’s music, in addition to their instantly memorable melodies and deeply emotive performances, has long been just how open so many of their songs are to interpretation. But no matter how you slice it, the ultimate goal of this song is not to break us down, but to show us our potential – even if we don’t believe in ourselves, or believe in that “better” version of who we could become.

Close Talker "Papier-mâché" © Nicole Plett
Close Talker “Papier-mâché” © Nicole Plett



Would you settle for us if you could choose right now? If you only knew how you could ruin me…” Morien may have written this song about becoming the father he wants his son to have, or simply about feeling inadequate or ill-prepared for the situation he finds himself in today. Is he deserving of his son – and does his son deserve better? The best thing questions like these can possibly do are drive us to show up and be present for the ones we love and those who need us most – be it a partner, a child, a parent, a sibling, a friend.

Man you’re such a show-off
Standing with your chest puffed
When’d you get so tough?
Yeah you’re moving up
Is it enough?
Nothing’s gonna get in your way
The house feels like it’s papier-mâché

— —

:: stream/purchase Papier-mâché here ::
:: connect with Close Talker here ::
Stream: “Papier-mâché” – Close Talker



— — — —

Papier-mâché - Close Talker

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? © Nicole Plett


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