Alexei Shishkin – “Santa Cruz” (Stereogum Premiere)

Portland songwriter Alexei Shishkin sounds displaced. On “Santa Cruz,” he pines for some form of home and comfort that he used to know from when he lived in LA. “But I don’t miss the place, I mostly miss the people/ And they told me that people get replaced, I shouldn’t have believed them.” Moving to a new place can be exciting, but it has the significant side effect of completely cutting you off from your entire support system, effectively leaving you alone. But it’s also an opportunity: to put down new roots, to start over, to ignore past mistakes. He asks: “Will I get back up again, or will I just stay down and whine about it? I just need a minute to decide.” Shishkin supports his wanderings with beautiful, impeccably arranged bedroom pop, diminutive and warm in its insecurities. Listen below.

(the dog tape) is out 4/14 via Forged Artifacts.