Saturday, September 24, 2022

Sorry hand their listeners a ‘Key to the City’ with their intimate new single

There is a particular pleasure in seeing a band braving new and different avenues of sound and steadily growing as they do it, and this is very much what Sorry has been doing. 

The London outfit have been moving forward from the jazz-infused, mellow rock of their debut album, through the release of an EP that took a look back at the immediacy of their earlier demos while also experimenting with a new, more frantic and scattered, more electronic-influenced voice. 

They are now releasing some very intriguing peeks at their forthcoming follow-up long-player, due for release in early October. The first single drawn from the record, ‘Let the Lights On’, showed an airier, more introspective sound, with the same clever use of repetition seen in their more recent releases. 

This new track, ‘Key to the City’, builds further on those same trends but also displays growing confidence and precision of voice.

It is recognisably Sorry, still, in many ways, starting from the lyrics, which have the stripped-bare honesty of feeling that has always been a trademark of this band. The track explores the conflicting emotions at the tail-end of a relationship that is inevitably past saving, but that one is still reluctant to acknowledge as being over. There is a loneliness to both the words and the sound that manages to perfectly convey that painful feeling. “You are the key to my city”, the song repeats as it confronts the loss, channeling the helpless realisation of being unable to imagine a future without someone who is already lost.

The band have quoted Nick Drake as an inspiration for this track and sound-wise, there is certainly something of the harmonies of ‘Pink Moon’, especially in the way that the more mellow guitar sounds are inserted as a backbone to the stretched-out vocals. The slightly uncanny feeling created by the occasional, well-timed dissonance and by a production that knows when to push a little bit further goes beyond the remit of indie balladeering. But there is something in it that seems to have descended from classic goth rock – think early Bauhaus, or even The Horrors by the time of ‘Sea Within a Sea.’

With all of this, it is still a track that has Sorry’s unmistakable signature to it: the stark honesty of its vocals, the subtle jazz influence in the construction of its sections, and the intimate yet almost oppressive mood it evokes. It is just a more mature, deeply intriguing version of a band that has been evolving their sound with great dedication – and we can only hope for Sorry to keep giving us the privilege of a key to their city.


Chiara Strazzulla


Image: Sorry ‘Key to the City’ Official Single Cover

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