Making a record that could supersede the unexpected success of 2013’s independently-released mini album Holo Pleasures probably would’ve been maddeningly difficult if Elvis Depressedly hadn’t adjusted their downtrodden demeanor. The result of their efforts is New Alhambra, a record that Mat Cothran and Delaney Mills wrote while living in a friend’s sunroom, the light trickling in and warming all of the little rotting bits of upset easily found in their earlier work. At times, New Alhambra sounds downright uplifting, as Cothran’s mortal concerns spiral the drain before disappearing completely. His characters defy god (“Thou Shall Not Murder“), they ask for forgiveness (“Ease”), they imagine a world without pain (“No More Sad Songs“). In many ways, New Alhambra is an album about growing up, about recognizing that this existence is uncertain, that some mistakes cannot be unmade, and giving all of the vulnerabilities that come with being human space to breathe. Despite being the closing track, “Wastes Of Time” is New Alhambra’s centerpiece, Cothran and Mills’ thesis. “It’s a sad world, we were raised in/ Let it fade in, to something new/ If you try, I will try/ If we fuck up, it’s alright/ There’s so much more to life/ Than all these wastes of time.” It’s a last call of sorts, an effort to to deny petty bullshit any brain-space to stew in, and get the most out of your limited time in this life. The closing song sounds like a close friend shrugging and saying, “Fuck it all,” in response to your endless complaints and worldly upsets, before buying another round. In a minute in a half, “Wastes Of Time” further illuminates all of the moments of overwhelming positivity to be found throughout New Alhambra, the light at the end of a dark and dreary, echoing tunnel. It embodies the reasons why, in spite of it all, we keep going. Stream New Alhambra below, and read our Q&A with the band here.
(via AV Club)
New Alhambra is out 5/12 via Run For Cover.