With a warbling array of sonic colors, Stray Fossa’s first single off their debut album opens. Diffuse shapes, like ink in water coalescing into momentary patterns, encapsulate the “otherness” “How Come?” explores.
The brooding vocals narrate an exchange between two people, internally working through their mutual misunderstanding of each other. Despite their connection, there is social isolation. Restless and anxious, they ask why is this interaction happening.
Interlocking guitars carry two separate melodies, weaving between each other like two lives meeting. Sometimes they’re in harmony, sometimes they compete for dominance, each telling their own story while influencing the other.
Even the synth flute emphasizes the unwilling inter-independence 2020 inflicted on relationships. As the flute jumps between octaves, often multiple times in a single bar, it mirrors the two people working through their interaction and what it means for their own sense of needed contact. They’re communicating with each other, but not on the same wavelength. “The second you call, you had me thinking, ‘how come?’”
The gentle, almost whispered vocals give plenty of space to explore the sonic environment Stray Fossa created. The tick-tock of a clock evokes a nostalgic past where these interactions felt more natural. A dissonant chord evokes the dissolution of normalcy in so many relationships.
“How Come?” doesn’t address the zeitgeist, but accompanies. It tells us what we’re feeling is normal, even in this abnormal world.
Stream “How Come?” below.
Ben is an advertising Madman who spends his days with words and music. When he’s not writing for his supper, he’s eating it at some of NYC’s most interesting restaurants.