Air Waves – “Horse Race” (Feat. Jana Hunter)

The fact that Nicole Schneit went to college with Dan Deacon (they both attended New York’s Purchase College) is often cited in conjunction with her musical project Air Waves. Though the two collaborated frequently, including for the jam band Ferrari, Air Waves is solely Schneit’s project, and one of those bands that seems to fully embody the person behind it. It’s Schneit’s band, no matter who else may be tangentially associated with it. For her second Air Waves album, Schneit worked with Jarvis Taveniere of Woods, JB Townsend of Crystal Stilts, Becca Kauffman and Felicia Douglass from Ava Luna, Brian Betancourt from Hospitality, and Jana Hunter of Lower Dens on vocals for a few tracks. As someone who was a huge fan of Hospitality’s Trouble, I’d say Betancourt makes perfect sense as a collaborator here. Even with this host of contributors, though, Schneit’s steady, low voice hums above all the propulsive, driving guitar work, especially on new track “Horse Race,” which also features a jangly, ragtime piano bit toward the end. The song is a tightly-reigned whirl, capturing the tension of its namesake activity, and Hunter’s barely-there harmonies add the flutter of excitement that victory usually brings. Except instead of horses, Schneit is singing about driving a Cadillac fast, on the hunt for something more than a winning streak. “Gonna find myself a new man / Gonna find myself a new land,” she sings. That sounds like a joyride worth tagging along for. Listen.

Parting Glances is out 9/18 via Western Vinyl. Pre-order it here.