Bring fun back to music! Diva Sweetly are undeniably having a lot of fun on their debut album. Parts of it sound like a stand-up comedy routine, with punchlines and quick asides and jokes that make you laugh and then feel a little bad about the current state of your life. In The Living Room packages all of that into impossibly catchy emo songs that pull from a lot of different threads but never settle down enough to sound like just one thing. And beneath the North Carolina band’s sunny melodies, there’s a lot of heart and anxiety over what the future might bring.
There are songs about dropping out of school, getting wooed by a cult, going to house shows where the force of all those people makes it feel like the floor’s gonna drop out from under you. On that last one, they interpolate “Auld Lang Syne” into an aerated hook about an alien invasion and listening to Third Eye Blind.
The songs seesaw back and forth between Karly Hartzman — who has an excellent solo project called Wednesday you should check out — and Daniel Gorham, who trade off choruses based on whoever’s voice is best suited for it. And the rest of the group, which includes guitarist Anderson Ragan and bassist Brody Rogers, both get enough room in the band’s busy songs to showboat a bit.
In The Living Room is all over the place, but it’s a tightly controlled chaos, and a whole lot of fun. Check it out below.
In The Living Room is out now via Seal Mountain Records.