by Katie Hanford
In the red-lit darkness of the “Tacoma Dome,” a Seattle basement venue adjacent to the city’s main arterial, Sour Widows poured their hearts out. Twinkling guitar tones and intertwining melodies of all varieties laid souls bare, tales of contemplative drives and late-night bedrooms serving as medicine for a meandering and uncertain love. Hailing from the Bay area, this show was a stop on a west coast tour to promote a slew of new singles dropping in late summer.
The first (and arguably catchiest) single, “Tommy,” wormed its way into my ear that evening and hasn’t left yet. According to vocalist/guitarist Susanna Thomson, “Tommy” is a story of disillusionment, contemplation, and a “love that doesn’t really reach any conclusions.” Although the words purvey a sense of uncertainty, the melodic elements of the track are solid foundations for dreamy, bittersweet pop. Layers upon layers of sweet melodies wander through the song, balanced by chunky guitars and a bite of distortion. Maia Sinaiko and Susanna have mastered weaving their voices together, the raw emotion of the song’s message coming through their perfectly placed harmonies. Cues from contemporary influences pervade the tune; drawlsy guitars conjure thoughts of Forth Wanderers, while the track’s crescendo chorus - and subsequent fade through the fuzz - could fit right into Pile’s catalogue. Yet “Tommy” stands on its own, a perfect synthesis of slacker pop and punk’s tamer edges.
With another single dropping in September and an EP to follow soon after, Sour Widows is slated to blow up the indie scene in the very near future. Don’t sleep on them!