The downside to writing about new music everyday is that the whole process can feel rather daunting from time to time. Hours upon hours spent shuffling through hundreds of songs looking for one more diamond in the rough, it’s a perpetual never ending cycle and it saddens me how numb things begin to sound with so many bands doing similar things, every couple of months though some song will come along reminding me what it is that keeps me in love with music and why I began doing this so many years ago, “The Match” from The Eastern Sea is one of those rare and perfect songs.
A peace is stirred from the very beginning, this is a song of discontent, even as everything kicks in there’s an undertone of sadness that no matter how I approach this track I find myself circling back to, like a sore on the roof of your mouth that would heal if only you would stop tonguing it, amidst the driving instrumentation are vocals practically working at odds with themselves right up to the bridge where, with the help of horns and some very Karen O-esc backing chants, things pull back and an all encompassing reconciliation of acceptance mixed with self-doubt settles heavy and warm, a peace that lingers even after the song is over, but it’s a sad peace, a subtle refraction, a contradiction of itself.
There’s something to The Eastern Sea, this track in particular, that makes me think this is how The Format would have sounded if Sam Means had more influence in the band and Nate Ruess (Fun.) had chosen not to abandon his heart-meet-sleeve lyrics for some grandiose pop ambitions. TES have created art that is honest and consuming, this is that rare coveted canticle meant for long late-night drives through the middle of nowhere, a close friend or two by your side and something unsaid almost disconsolate yet celestial between you.