DREAMING guitar pop dreams on the vibrant Austin, Texas scene, the fine trio Semihelix are bidding for love with their new track, “Recoil”, which comes accompanied accompanied by a quirky stop-motion involving bejewelled beetles, reel-to-reel tape, toy cars and ladybirds; go have a looksee at the end there, it’s a lovely thing – and it’s also the title track from their forthcoming album.
Semihelix are vocalist and guitarist Geannie Friedman, bassist Kevin Martin and drummer Valdemar Barrera, and reveal the story behind that beguiing stop-motion comes from the 1993 movie Ruby In Paradise – a homage to, and retake on, Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey, in whihc Ashley Juddleaves in her car to pursue a new life.
“It coincides greatly with the story behind ‘Recoil’,” they say, “The song has to do with resilience from going through a hard time and building yourself back up to heal and move on from the bad situation.
“It’s also about finding close friends who have your back and how important it is to show the people close to us gratitude.
“After being bullied in her life in various situations, Geannie speaks about the importance of being your own best advocate, having other people’s backs and reaching out to close friends when things get hard.”
And as a song it comes out of dream pop thing with lovely indie guitars and vocal caress; to me, they capture the spirit of Flying Nun bands like The Verlaines and Look Blue Go Purple, and the post-C86 thing when bands started to move in a more blissful and blissed-out direction; pre-shoegaze, when a gentle psychedelia began to slip back in.
“The lyrics ‘I am going down, I am coming around,’ are about how time heals all wounds, and how we may feel down now but things will turn around and get better; how we are not alone,” the band continue.
“We all struggle, and we all get through tough times. The knowing we’re not alone makes it a bit easier to reach out to a friend when feeling down.
“We are never a burden. We help each other out; that’s what real friends are there for. We recoil from a dark place with our own support for ourselves and the support of others.”
“Recoil” follows their last single, the strumsome, hazy loveliness of “New Destination”; to show they’e really got this, really got this. In fact, if you pop over to their Bandcamp page you’ll find a little treasure trove of their seven digital singles to date; a recommended course of action.
We’re told Semihelix’ Recoil, the album, will be released in July or August; it was laid down at The Hen House in Austin. It was produced and mixed by Matt Gerhard, who’s worked with Okkervil River, !!!, Shearwater and Future Islands. On the strength of these singles, ’twill be absolutely lovely.
Find Semihelix elsewhere on the web at Bandcamp, Facebook and Instagram.