by Ryan Vieira (@ballisgoth)
Thanks For Coming is the bedroom-pop project of the incredibly prolific Rachel Brown. They sew together melody and chorus in wondrous ways as songs erupt into anthems of malaise. Many of their tunes feel reminiscent of Dear Nora’s brand of pop. With 57 releases on Bandcamp, you can listen to Thanks For Coming for the rest of your life.
Thanks For Having Me is a full-band release. The trio consists of Rachel Brown on guitar, Lindsey Sherman on bass, and Nate Amos on drums. The 5-track EP was produced by Amos and released through Grandpa Bay Recordings on May 29th, 2017. The result is something that feels akin to a debut. It alludes to what could be – a succinct, tight, and powerful pop band.
The album opens with an unassuming groove on “Anything.” Any lack of surprise is quickly annihilated. As the instrumentation changes pace, Rachel’s voice soars over the top of clean rhythms and grips the song by the neck. The lyricism addresses a person who performs and deceits their way through a given relationship. They handle the archetype in confidence with every word.
‘I’m Not my Flower Dresses’ is an ode to the end of unfair expectation. Rachel juxtaposes who they are with the sundress to create distance. They are tired of assumptions and they let us know. The rhythms start slowly, but they transition into a burst of energy. ‘Human Being’ is my favorite track from the release. The trio discerns a special synergy as the song rolls. The transitions seem sharper and the details fall effortlessly into place. I felt compelled to dive into the Thanks For Coming backlog after hearing this one.
‘My Hands R Everywhere’ keeps a steady pace. Reimagining the function of a body is a nightmarish premise to express discontent, but the effect lands well. I would happily sway along to this one with a friend or two. The final track concerns itself with habit. Criticality of habit is always a tricky thing. Whether this habit is your own or something that belongs to someone you love, the answer to coping is often muddled in-between support and frustration. “They’re Only Cigarettes” feels appropriately removed from the prior production quality. The song takes us back into a bedroom. The result is something that feels like a secret.
The willingness to release hyper specific sensitive material is telling of an artist who promises to exchange themselves with an audience. For my money, that quality is something to be embraced. Thanks For Having Me is a wonderful snapshot of things to come.