Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Mike Gentry
It should never be a wonder how much we're all keeping to ourselves. It should never be a wonder how easily someone could snap and be a completely different person. It's all that anyone can do to hold himself or herself together, under the conditions that they're presented. We fortify all of our most tender parts, but to protect them absolutely, we would be sacrificing our nimbleness, our flexibility and to deny oneself all possible vulnerability isn't really much of a living. It's passable, but that's about it. There needs to be that chance that something or someone can get through the thick insulation and closer to some place scary.
The name of the newest album by The Helio Sequence, "Negotiations," is a word that means different things to everyone - a word that actually means different things to two people involved in the same one. Negotiations are nothing but compromises and even if everyone's relatively pleased with the middle ground that's reached at the end of them, everyone lost a little. It might be a bummer of a way to think about them, but there's no denying the amount of truth that's in the thought that we're all giving up something in any of the negotiations that we carry out. Brandon Summers sings, on the title track:
"Heartache one more chance for you
All those things in the days before
Memory leaving what you knew
Former times how they follow you
Streetlights fall on hollow night
You see up ahead what could be
No more mysteries no more penalties
Shake my hand look right through me
No more false promises
Make your stand again
Take these rings these subtle things
all those things we planned
Go once more down that road
Take the easy way
Just one more time say those words
Wake me oh so softly."
Summers and drummer/keyboardist Benjamin Weikel make these negotiations sound as if they're coming to us out of a modest summer burn off. It feels like these moments are taking place in that overlapping part of the year, when the natural heat has given way to a heat that's made by wood and hands. These are fires created for purposes and these songs are the remnants of hollow nights and soft touches.
The Helio Sequence Official Site
Sub Pop Records