Early June begs for an escape narrative. The sun finally feels hot enough to put sunscreen on, the bugs are coming out, and restlessness seems to be the pervasive feeling. Escape narratives about the coast are especially lovely this time of year. Those who can’t make it to the water can hopefully find a little piece of it in today’s premiere.
Atwood Magazine is proud to be premiering Sleep Good’s new single, “Somewhere.” The (almost) love song is dreamy, wistful, and a little dark – just what we’re all looking for to start summer off right.
Late every night
slipping through the door unaware
my eyes are close, but I still hear
though it should hurt, I’m not afraid to say I don’t care
I am just as bad, that is for sure
Listen: “Somewhere” – Sleep Good
“Somewhere” is the lead single off Austin, Texas-based Sleep Good’s upcoming LP entitled Bohemian Grove (out August 15 via yk Records). Sleep Good is the project of Will Patterson, a guitarist, vocalist, filmmaker, and composer. He’s joined by Austin Jones (bass), Nacho Guerrero (guitar), Justin Davidson (synths), and John Kolar (drums). The title Bohemian Grove references an elite club in Northern California where politicians and other VIP gather, essentially to return to their halcyon days – Nixon himself was a visitor back in the day.
Patterson invites the listener to this place of misbehavior and escape along the California coast. Sonically, Patterson pulls from ’60s psychedelic rock and other modern influences such as Tame Impala and Best Coast. Staccato piano octaves punctuate the song, inducing a trance-like listening experience. Patterson’s voice is warm and inviting, and a soft bed of strings helps it to float through the washy soundscape. The melody is woozy and a little dizzying, reflecting the speaker’s disquietude. The strings build, and the chorus explodes joyfully – a little like the feeling of exiting a viaduct on the Pacific Coast Highway and coming face to face with the ocean – and then drops back down for the anxious simmer of the verses.
“Somewhere” encapsulates the familiar narrative of the adage “the grass is greener on the other side.” Lyrically, Patterson ricochets between vague, happy pictures of a better life on the coast and the reality of a failed (and potentially adulterous) relationship. The lyrics yearn for an escape from whatever life the speaker is currently leading – begging this lost love to run away with him, to “start another life.”
so let’s ride
once we make it to the coast
we’ll start another life
we might lose all our friends
I’ll have you in the end
Patterson winds through everything that went wrong during or because of the relationship – “you met another man, I lost my wife,” and worse, “drinking away my only hope.” The only solace he seems to find, however shaky, is the ambiguous “you” that he comes back to every time. As with every failed relationship, there is always a glimmer of hope that things weren’t really as bad as they seemed. No matter how rocky things have been or could be, it’s the possibility of this dream that keeps the momentum going. Because of course, the coast is the only place where all of this works out.
Bohemian Grove is out digitally August 15, and on vinyl November 25.
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cover © Zane Ruttenberg