Sluka Returns With New Single “Happy in Your World”
“Happy in Your World”, the latest release from Sluka, is one of those tunes that starts just like it begins. Quietly. Hauntingly. And with a deliberate poignancy that’s almost impossible to miss yet, somehow, hints of something much more.
In between, of course, is a musical whirlwind of progressions, strings, and some scattershot drumming that’s as worthy as any ever was. Those who’ve been listening to the band long enough realize it’s unlikely for founder/leader/visionary Christopher Sluka to drop a ballad for a single, certainly not this close to the release of an album (the Figure It Out LP is slated for an October release).
But he almost fools you into thinking so, for at least about the first third of the cut. He rides a pianissimo piano, as it were, that’s deceptively simple in its intricacy with meaningful lyrics about shared desire, fulfillment, and perhaps even some common sense of elation. The chorus contains a simple admission of being happy in another’s world. We all should be so fortunate.
The pace picks up considerably, however, not long after the beginning of the second verse. The bass, still manipulated by player extraordinaire Anna Epinik, falls in line while the drums animate the track with a liveliness that’s fitting in an ode to felicity. The latter doesn’t last for long though, as the most moving lines in the tune are accentuated by a rest in the drums to accentuate the vocalist’s (Sluka himself, who also wrote the tune, manned the guitars, and is most likely responsible for the piano part that flitters in and out of most of the number) phrasing.
The track peaks during the bridge or its rising action when the strings (which appear to have been played live by Nico Hueso) swing wide open, drowning the rest of the instruments in a panoramic sweep of sound. However, this is also the moment when drummer Michael Beddard’s most celebrated playing begins with a unbridled passion that’s every bit as unfettered. The vocalists can’t help but chime in with some melodic “aahs” providing a soundtrack, perhaps, to what happiness were to sound like if it was as spontaneous and as personified as the band appears to make it.
It fortifies the work’s dreamy quality as an idyll for the real world that takes over as soon as the final note fades.