Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Matt Oliver, Mastered by Sam Patlove
The love songs that The Trishas sing are barely love songs. There's a little of it in there, but it's a whole lot smudged and chipped. It's almost beyond recognition, the stuff that Savannah Welch, Liz Foster, Kelley Mickwee and Jamie Wilson of the Austin-based group harmonize about. It's the version that's seen many better days. It's the chain-smoking version of love, that sits around the house all day, trapped in an unwinnable situation, but it still finds the effort to throw something into the oven for dinner every night - something that can be plopped down onto the table and forked through in silence. It's the kind of love that doesn't whimper back, but returns without a word, comes through the door with the key that it still has and slips between the covers right there next to the warm slab that it left a while back. It's an unceremonious return, one that hardly gets a glance. It's true country love, a romance that's smoldering lightly most of the time, but as long as it's still there somewhat, it might as well be as strong as it ever was. Somehow, this is enough to get by on. It's enough to still feel good about, perhaps because we all recognize at different points that we're not getting any younger and there's nothing all that horrible or wrong about a familiar pair of legs and a decent enough companion sort.
The women in Trishas songs are written to be mostly sympathetic figures, those who we do feel sorry for, if only slightly. We can't possibly be sure if they just have no better options, but they're stuck, absolutely stuck, in a vicious cycle of rebounding right back into the arms that they've left previous. They are haunted and conflicted by people that they once loved/will always love. They're looking to find a place "Where I don't see your face in the cold light at dawn," a requisite that doesn't seem at all unattainable. It feels like if the only thing that's reminding you about an old lover is a cold morning light, then it's a person that you might be able to do without. They sing, "Just like clockwork/I come back around/To the same old boy/For another round," even those these are the same people who never call them anything sweet, anything endearing. These just happen to be people flipping through channels, again finding that nothing worth a damn is on, and settling on the syndicated reruns of a show that they've only shown a passing interest in.