“The Cause,” Inner Oceans’ latest single, finds the band going off its usual map of dreamily transporting pop into noisier territory. Griffith Snyder steps in and out of a near falsetto seemingly singing to his higher self for guidance to almost whispered darker passages in self-comfort as though in debating with himself about what path to take in an existential conundrum. The layers of sound, white noise, disorienting tones, melodic drones shimmering like steam down a dark alley and the phased percussion reflect an internal confusion while also working as an unconventional, intuitive guide through a maze of options. It’s impossible to say if there’s a definitive resolution by the end of the song but that’s the point—life rarely presents you with a clearly defined route through to where you want to be in your heart and in life. Not only that but maybe you don’t even know anymore where you want to be because your internal compass of your dreams and desires has shifted as well. Yet the song is oddly comforting in its inconclusiveness. It’s a signal post in Snyder’s evolution as a songwriter who was inventive and talented to one confident enough in his ability to take chances with more challenging aesthetics.
Though the tone of the new Inner Oceans single “Saturday’s Eyes” is one of melancholic nostalgia it’s misty melodies are anchored in early morning mind-wandering. The way the song builds into a gentle flow of emotions and imagery suggests indulging moments when you can look back fondly on a time when you had a love or a time in your life that retains that kind of feeling when things seemed bright and easy and open. But it’s more. The song also expresses how even if that time and those relationships are gone you can revisit them and honor the experience and allow it to illuminate your life in the present rather than surrender to the conceit that things were always better way back when. The accompanying music video was shot on an iPhone during the final year of songwriter and singer Griffith Snyder’s marriage which brings to pairing of song and image a poignancy and presumably a refreshing generosity of spirit and not just the ache and hurt feelings that are in many songs made in the wake of the dissolution of a relationship. Snyder has been writing affecting and adventurous pop music for years and this is the latest in a string of worthwhile releases. Watch the video below and follow Inner Oceans at he links provided.