waveform* breaks down every track of “Last Room”, on tour in February
The reissue of the Connecticut indie duo waveform*the album of 2020 Last room is officially out today via their new in-house label, Run For Cover (order yours). We featured the band in November when the album was announced, and now to celebrate the official release, band members Jarett Denner and Dan Poppa have given us a track-by-track breakdown of the record.
Before we let Jarett and Dan take it, we’d also like to let you know that waveform* will be playing shows in the northeast in February, including one in Brooklyn on February 27 at Baby’s All Right opening for hello Mary (whose drummer Stella Branstool sings on waveform*’s super new RFC label mates album Anxious) and Stella Rose and the Dead Tongue (tickets). All dates are listed below.
Take it away, Jarett and Dan…
WAVEFORM* DROP EACH TRACK ON LAST ROOM
Jarett: I think this song came out of a period of “writers lock” and I just decided to make the song as simple as possible, just to get something out of my system. It ended up interesting me because of the vocal harmonies I think.
It’s so simple that I can’t think of much else to say about it, which was the point of the song I guess.
“To tell you”
Dan: I think this song started when I set the guitar to Drop D to try and write a song like “Milly” by Milly. This song to me, in general, sounds like a combination of every heavy guitar band I’ve ever liked (from Nirvana to Title Fight). The slow, loud part at the end was meant to feel like some sort of metal-core type breakdown in a grungy song like that. With all that said, I never considered this song to be so original, but who really cares.
“Go to bed”
Jarett: I was messing around in some made up chords and found these arpeggios, and I felt like they worked in a creepy, scary way. Radiohead’s No Surprises is one of my favorite songs, so I’m constantly drawn to this lullaby. When I took it to dan, he incorporated all the shoegaze elements that made it what it is.
Jarett: I had the first two chords of the song in my head for months, took the chord progression straight from the Oasis toolbox. I think I watched that stupid TED talk on songwriting that explained those lyric writing principles, and I used them when writing that song. I think we originally planned to have drums for the song but we recorded everything except the drums and it matched the feel of the song well.
“Book of Curse”
Dan: It’s probably one of the songs I’m most proud of so far in my life. There’s a bunch of samples on it. I think the ambient part after the vocals stop is really crazy but I can’t remember how we did that at all. I don’t know what else to say about this song, except that I did an early demo of it, and the guitars were in tune, like, drop A. It sounded ridiculous and it sounds really funny to listen to now.
Dan: I guess the most interesting thing about this song is that we have an album called ‘Shooting Star’ but that song wasn’t on it. I also know that this song existed, in some forms, at the time when we made this album. I don’t know why we haven’t tried using it, but we have a video on our youtube channel of a very old, spacey version, called “SHOOTING STAR”.
Jarett: I wrote most of this song when I was 15, I think. There’s this terrible demo of the song where I try to sing like Julian Casablancas or something. We started playing it at gigs and found a better arrangement for it. We decided to put it on Last Room because of how often we played it live, although I was hesitant because it was so old. I’m happy now I think.
“The Miner’s Lullaby”
Dan: This song also existed while we were doing the Shooting Star album. I would just randomly do different instrumental versions of it over the years. I guess somehow we realized that it might be cool if we tried it as a full band recording, and that made a lot more sense. I’m not sure how it happened though. What I do remember, though, is that Sarah and I sang on it. While arranging the song, I realized it sounded so much better without my vocals, so we went with it. I also remember that we weren’t going to put this song on the album. It was a “B-side” and one day we uploaded it to Soundcloud and promoted it on social media. After a few hours, we thought, why don’t we put this song on there? Then we immediately removed the song from soundcloud, deleted the posts and put it on the tracklist. Not so crazy about a “story” but we were just going crazy finishing the album I guess.
Dan: I only have a few things to say about this song. We recorded everything, except the drums, at Sarah’s place while our friend Seb (from Dearly Somber) was visiting. It was different from usual because we usually recorded the guitars in Jarett’s room. All I remember is being up very late in the room where Seb was. He was trying to sleep and I was sampling Minecraft notepad sounds in the song. It was funny, but those sounds are definitely in the song and they sound good I think.
Dan: I don’t know if there’s much to say about this song. It’s definitely one of our favorite songs to play live, even though it’s one of the slowest songs on the album. Also, the song title/the way it sounds matches the album cover very well, I think.
waveform* — 2022 Tour Dates
02/17 West Haven, CT @ The Beeracks
02/18 Boston, MA @ The Kennel
02/19 New Paltz, NY @ The Elting Memorial Library
02/20 Philadelphia, PA @ Original 13
02/21 Pittsburgh, PA @ Rothko House
02/22 Washington, D.C. @ Quarry House
02/27 Brooklyn, NY @ Baby’s All Right with Hello Mary