Ever felt like a constant disappointment to someone, only to realise after months of sweating for their approval that maybe it’s not you – it’s them? It’s a pretty liberating feeling – the moment you realise that you’ll never not fall short of their expectations. Suddenly it dawns on you that you’re not the total fuck-up that certain someone – a girlfriend, a boyfriend, a boss, whoever – has made you feel for so long. A weight lifts, that knot in your stomach loosens and you stop giving a shit, because that person will probably never be happy. Never content. Nothing you do will ever be good enough.
Irish four-piece Tandem Felix’s new single is that feeling distilled into three and a half minutes of sage, breezy, lilting Americana reminiscent of AA Bondy, Kurt Vile and Wilco. Done “running in circles” as frontman David A. Tapley puts it over wistful strums of acoustic guitar and lapsteel echoes, it’s about the wave of relief as you draw a line on a crumbling relationship, at least to these ears: “The centre of focus, the butt of the jokes, all my foundations will go up in smoke,” Tapley sings in an affecting near-whisper.
The band – completed by bassist Evan Keogh, violinist Éna Brennan and drummer Jeffrey Courtney – come from the same Dublin scene as Radar favourites Girl Band but exist on the total opposite end of the sonic spectrum to their abrasive, antagonistic pals, specialising instead in gorgeous washes of gently psychedelic keys and sun-splashed American West Coast melodies. Their new EP, ‘Comma’ is a dream. Don’t miss it when it drops on April 27 via Dublin imprint Trout Records.