Melbourne-based group The Sunken Sea is back with their driving new earworm “Is it Living?” available everywhere now. The band carefully blends a lopsided jazz and post-punk sound. The lead singer and songwriter Dougal James tackles a balance of political and personal topics in the group’s music. The new single is a follow-up to The Sunken Sea’s 2021 EP After The Heat.
“Is It Living?” continues to build the band’s signature sound with James’s melodic bass vocals and over all giddy energy. The repetition of “is it living?” allows the listener into the world of feeling lost in this race and chaos that is life. The guitar guides the song and guitarist Maddi Si propels the song with their fret-work and soaring electric sound. The drumming elevates the song from an intimate conversation to a full band performance. A standout addition to the song is local singer songwriter Stella Farnan. Her softer voice mixes beautifully with the lower, rich sounds of James’s voice. The overall sound might be compared to Big Red Machine and Taylor Swift’s “Renegade.”
When asked about the writing process James shared, “‘Is it Living?’ is born out of dueling pressures: long hours of work blur into tense, fleeting scenes with lovers, which end with the inevitable trek to work the next morning.”
The song is accompanied by a DIY music video of the band going around town and posing in windows and by trash cans. It shows off their fun personality and weaves in the thoughtful songwriting. It is worth the watch! (There is an epilepsy warning for the use of flashing lights throughout the video.)
Written by Katie Power
Featured Image by Liam Van Der Vlist
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