Waiting a Lifetime
Cinematic Music Group
Splashh = The Strokes + Jagwar Ma
Though it hasn’t been quite a lifetime, Waiting a Lifetime has taken long enough. Comfort, the debut from Splashh, came out in June of 2013, and “All I Wanna Do” and “Vacation” became soundtrack anthems of the summer. With the success of the debut, the band wanted to get out a follow-up called Honey and Salt in 2014. But with a change in drummers, the members spread from Brooklyn to New Zealand, releasing a new catalogue of tracks that just didn’t sound like Splashh. The group had to restart what would be the follow up. Two years later, they finally have it with a new sound, a new drummer and a new outlook that isn’t necessarily defined by a pair of shades in the summertime.
This new record is much darker. It’s not as sure of itself as its predecessor was, and it seems to play with the dark and grey matter found in between the seasons. “Honey and Salt” don’t seem to necessarily allude to the group’s former failure but does bring on dismal lyrics from singer Sasha Carlson: “All the leaves are falling / And the light is leaving.” It’s quite a step away from songs about sitting in the sun—establishing that this is a new album not only distinguished by its new sleeve, but also the four years of its making. “Gentle April” reveals how lackadaisical they’ve become. It’s a much softer track than what we’ve heard before and the lyrics show the loss of confidence the group has faced: “I never thought I’d lose my own direction / The month is fading into a passive feeling.” Rather than singing about the lust and desire in “All I Wanna Do,” they’ve instead become perplexed by just the passing of time.
But this record does have its bright lights, too. The title track actually has a vibe that’s similar to what they were doing for years, despite having a bit of a Pixies-esque feel. It’s followed by “Closer,” which is also nostalgic of the bands’ former work, and its chorus, “Trust me and love me / Kiss me, crush me,” exudes the same love of youth and lust found in Comfort. It’s a sign that it’s still the same Splashh making this music with the same desires and passions as before.
It’s still a little unclear as to what this new release hopes to overcome. Waiting a Lifetime has marks of maybe being bitter about what did and didn’t transpire two years ago, and still carries some of the same essence from what was accomplished four years ago. But alone, it doesn’t stand for much, aside from the fact that Splashh finally got a new record out. It does have its handful of catchy, fun tunes—and more dismal ones that are surprising, but not necessarily bad—but mostly it feels insecure. Hopefully, this record doesn’t linger at the forefront of the band for too long, and they can get another record out before another passing of four years. –Austin Doty