Next Door/Kanine Records
Someday is Today
Living Hour’s third LP ‘Someday is Today’ was born out of isolation and seclusion; some of it intentional, some of it through necessity. Based in Winnipeg, the foursome are accustomed to adapting to the remoteness of their environment and in normal circumstances the quartet would work together in a practice room to flesh out their current crop of ideas. However, 2020 had other plans didn’t it?
What would become their latest album took shape via Zoom calls and the sharing of ideas via text and email as the outfit bunkered down through quarantine. Once Covid restrictions lifted, the group leapt into an intense seven day recording session
as the harsh Manitoba winter plunged temperatures to brisk -30. Sam Sarty (vocals/bass/keys) reflects on this period of time with a bruised fondness “it’s a grind, but it’s incredibly challenging in a frustratingly beautiful kinda way. It pushes you to keep going, to keep finding glimmers to move forward.”
Given ‘Someday is Today’s uncompromising surroundings and its unique birth, it’s perhaps no surprise to hear that the record is one of deep introspection while being sonically aloof. It’s an album constructed on waif-like structures, ones that delicately manifest, evolve and evaporate throughout a song’s lifespan. Sarty’s elfin vocals follow the same thread, as her pitch is mostly an elusive whisper during the record’s 11 tracks. That being said, Living Hour’s latest offering occasionally slides into a quiet/loud dynamic shifts, which is where the gentle arrangements expand to larger plumes of sound.
Intimacy and nothingness largely dominate ‘Someday is Today’, with the tone being set by opener ‘Hold Me In Your Mind’, a song forged by whimsical bleeps and bloops, and a dreamy texture that buoys Sarty’s tender vocals. ‘Lemons and Gin’ shimmers with a stark nothingness as the band’s mouthpiece murmurs “it’s a safe place to hide”, presumably reflecting on Winnipeg’s out-of-the-way status. ‘Feelings Meeting’ is one of a few occurrences where the record jolts out of its melancholic fug for something rawer, as the track’s sonics swing from subtle and tender to crackled and fuzzy. Seemingly Sarty has identified some negative behavioural traits as she utters the coda of “bad habit” during the song’s dying moments. ‘December Forever’ follows a similar path while also demonstrating some delightful interplay between piano and guitar. ‘Hump’ literally documents the notion of not being able to surpass an unmoveable hurdle, as Sarty ruminates “I can never get over this hump” while a nocturnal cyclical hue of chiming guitar and tonal organ generates a wistful atmosphere. The album is typified by ‘Exploding Rain’ which finds Sarty and Gilad Carroll (guitars/vocals) share singing duties over a simple, jangled refrain. It’s when the two voices combine to sing “all my days are swirling together” do
you have the relatable pang of lockdown life where time merged into one long smudge of existence.
Living Hour have captured the rawness of their surroundings and committed it to wax, forging an album of delicate human connection and melancholic vulnerability.
Words and thoughts by Adam Williams
Order Something is Today by Living Hour HERE