On their latest single “New Age Soul,” Small Reactions creates a vibey, nerve-pop anthem perfect for cowboys.
Stream “New Age Soul” – Small Reactions[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/997004818?secret_token=s-nh7JqEjwAgX” params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&visual=true&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”300″ iframe=”true” /]
“The idea for ‘New Age Soul’ came from Little Danny’s show on WFMU called ‘The Cool Blue Flame.’ He broadcasts from West Texas, so it conjured up all this desert imagery: cowboy ballads, low-key ghost ’60s garage pop.“
Those who know Small Reactions (or who have read our interview here) already know what we’re about to say: The Atlanta-based quartet loves to experiment with their sounds. The first album, Similar Phantoms, brought us that pleasant indie-rock of the early 2000s, which never goes out of fashion. With time, especially with tracks like “Rnx_002,” they took the path of psychedelic pop, but better defined with what the band would call “nerve pop.” There is no lack of ’60s and ’70s influences, and we can hear it in their latest single “Police State.” A sweet, gentle piece, but disarmingly honest in its lyrics. What to expect from their upcoming single “New Age Soul,” out on SofaBurn Records? Let’s discover it together because we at Atwood Magazine are very proud to be premiering the track today!
After “Police State,” no one would have known what to expect from Small Reactions in the future. It is, after all, a raw and honest piece about police brutality, which has become increasingly rampant – in an environment described as utopian, but, unfortunately, not so imaginary. An indie-folk piece with influences such as Charley Patton, Mississippi John Hurt. Names that are carved into music history, but Small Reactions have really managed to give them all the honour they deserve – and to make us realise that they really do have their rightful place in the world of music.
The streets stay a-glow
And our hands unfold
Keeping me close
We’re new age souls
Nails in my knees
Head on the trail
The canyon calling at horizon’s end
Sound and fury on a freezing wind
From a waking dream (full of fear)
What a relevant look (your evil eyes)
My gridlocked companion (I am saved)
My Cambridge decision (blessed one)
David Bowie, Mac DeMarco, Bob Dylan, The Strokes – if these names make your heart race, these four guys from Atlanta are truly the band you’ve always wanted to discover. “New Age Soul” shows perfectly and clearly the whole musical path taken from 2014 to 2021, joining small details of each work created so far. All this, however, without forgetting the quartet’s nerve pop touch. Indie-pop, rock, psychedelic-pop, indie-folk, post-punk. Names that would usually be used for musical genres similar to that of Small Reactions, but every definition crumbles after a first listen; we could say that the band is really made of “New Age Soul”(s).
The track we’re previewing feels like a rebirth. It takes us back to the Far West, to a cowboy full of energy who enjoys his freedom in the desert and then quenches his thirst in a saloon. A saloon where there is no piano, just Small Reactions playing “New Age Soul.” And mind you, this wasn’t a random example: the band themselves have stated that the concept of the song revolves around just that, the freedom you feel in a deserted western Texas – as, after all, the first verse of the lyrics also suggests.
At the desert’s mouth, the Internet’s out
In the electric air of western Texas fair
Hand in the breeze and a face to the sun
Walking nowhere, already gone
Dive into this magical atmosphere with us, sipping some whiskey (non-alcoholic drinks are also welcome, no problem at all!) on a sultry day, watching the sunset. Or even watching “Once Upon a Time in America” by Sergio Leone, just to get you in the mood.
Stream “New Age Soul” exclusively on Atwood Magazine, and make sure to stay tuned and stream Small Reactions’ forthcoming album!
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© Ruben Alverado
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