How great is that feeling? When you internally feel yourself go “ah, yes, this is what I was missing”. A frustrating thing about being obsessed with music is feeling left out or not understanding when a certain artist becomes popular. I felt that with a band called Sorority Noise. Before I go on, Sorority Noise is an indie/alternative rock/emo band from Hartford, Connecticut (anyone else think of Gilmore Girls when they hear Hartford mentioned? Me either…). They have three EPs, share three splits with other artists and have three albums. Sorority Noise only formed four years ago, that output in such a short amount of time is damn impressive.
I’m usually a big fan of bands like Sorority Noise. And yet, when I heard their sophomore album, Joy, Departed, I just didn’t like it. I had nothing against the band or their instrumentation. It just didn’t hit me. I didn’t love it the way my close friends did, no matter how hard I tried to like it. So, I gave up and figured they weren’t for me, and that’s okay. However, Sorority Noise captured my attention when they announced their third album, which was released last month: You’re Not As _____ As You Think. Interesting title and lovely art. What interested me most was that this album was produced by Mike Sapone, who produced three of Brand New’s albums. Brand New is my favourite band. But, because I’m slack and forget about all the cool bands out there, You’re Not As _____ As You Think completely fell off my radar. It came back today.
Today, I opened Spotify, intending to listen to an awesome, weird band called Crying. I ended up checking my Discover Weekly first, and No Halo by Sorority Noise was one of the tracks on it. I finally remembered that I wanted to give Sorority Noise another chance! And my god, I am so happy I did.
No Halo is a fantastic song. Short, not-so-sweet, and punchy. This is already one of my favourite songs of the year. The double tracked vocals are reminiscent of Brand New’s Deja Entendu. The guitars are heavy and loud. The lyrics are honest and emotional. The chorus is one of the most heart-wrenching passages I’ve heard in a long time:
“So I didn’t show up to your funeral
But I showed up to your house
And I didn’t move a muscle
I was quiet as a mouse
And I swore I saw you in there
But I was looking at myself”
It’s such a heavy chorus to listen to. Vocalist Cameron Boucher described the song like this in a Stereogum interview:
“The song, “No Halo,” the first single… I don’t know if I’ve told anyone this… I was back home at my friend’s house chilling, and I was like, I’m going to drive home. We were in Sean’s neighborhood, but Sean had been passed away for about a year, but I didn’t remember that. And so I was like, I’m gonna drive by Sean’s house and just stop by and say hi. And then I drove to his house, and when I pulled up in front, I realized he wasn’t there. That’s what that chorus of the song is about, and the whole song in general… I think I literally just sat in my car and wrote 90% of the lyrics right there.”
The outro closes the song in a sad, effective way and sets up the rest of the album.
“So when you show up to my funeral
Will you be wearing white or black?
And I know the voice is in you
It’s the energy I lack
So if there’s a race to heaven
I will surely come in last
And if there’s a race to heaven
I will always come in last”
Songs about religion (questioning one’s faith) and death are just something else. Sorority Noise are something else. I can’t explain how amazing it is to already connect and love a band after hearing an album for the first time today. I cannot wait to dive in to You’re Not As _____ As You Think properly. This band is special and I am very excited to watch them grow.