Funambulism is defined as the art of walking a tightrope. It aptly fits the process of recording an album for pretty much any band out there these days (or any days, for that matter), but it also captures the quirky sound of Boston indie-pop quartet Surf Vietnam.
The band’s new single, “Fallingwater”, which we are premiering today on Vanyaland, is the first track off the band’s upcoming album Funambulism, produced by Brian E. King from Parks. The track barrels along as John Godfrey’s piano and lyrics trade barbs fit for a pub sing-along, but it never totally loses its balance.
“Funambulism is a concept album about the battle between a man and his ego,” Surf Vietnam explain. “Tightrope walking between his true self and the self he’s fabricated for the outside world, the narrator wages war on his own narcissism. This operatic opus transports the listener to a fictional universe featuring a recurring cast of friends, family and lovers. Meanwhile, the music itself balances between pop styles as a vivid, colorfully orchestrated rock soundtrack for an everyday hero.”
Godfrey says the lyrics, with a timely reference to N.W.A., are “kind of vague poetry ’90s emo style,” adding: “We had a bunch of lyrical snippets that fit the melody but not an order that made sense. Last October I got my wisdom teeth out (without getting knocked out) and I had a pretty bad weekend out of it. By Sunday I was actually sipping on Fireball on the rocks and decided it was time to put the pieces in order. The narrator of the song is obviously concerned with, or at least aware of, the perception his friends have of him. Each verse has a recurring ‘my friends call me…’ that’s first complementary, then inane, and then derogatory. Each verse as a whole follows the same trajectory, and the song falls in a downward spiral from beginning to end. Because the lyrics are specifically unspecific, I hope the song can mean a lot of different things to each listener.”
Listen to “Fallingwater” below, and peep the Indiegogo video and campaign link as you’re humming along…