Sonically, shoegaze demands a delicate balance between sweet-natured, often murmured vocals, blazonic romantic lyrics and the swoop, whine and crunch of multiple guitar lines. Those elements are found to great effect in the music of Canadian band Talking Violet, and their latest track ‘Sparjammer 67’.
Formed in Windsor, Ontario in 2016, the group were initially a duo of Jill Goyeau and Jay Turnbull, with bassist/vocalist Nate Blackton and drummer McKenzie Burrows joining last year to fully round out the band’s sound. The lead to TV’s first single ‘Aspen’ last January and their debut EP Round Dreams in February. ‘Sparjammer 67’, also taken from the EP, sees the band go full visual in a video whose hazy purple lighting effects certainly live up to their colourful name.
Of all the tracks on Round Dreams, ‘Sparjammer 67′ is probably the closest to dream pop. Jill’s vocals are most reminiscent of Cocteau Twins’ Liz Fraser, with Jay’s up-stroked guitar chords giving the tune an opening shimmer.
Soon after, that shoegazey contrast pops up with McKenzie’s pounding drum flurries coming to the fore, announcing a gentle shift into a chorus. The guitars start to croon a little longer, Jill’s vocals get more warped and distorted and there’s just time for a five second stop before the song’s final thirty seconds sees her ask “What’s it like to feel alive?” and its guitar notes fade into the purple ether.
In a recent interview about ‘Sparjammer 67’, the band have said they want the song “to feel like a glimpse of light after an era of darkness”. And, with its bright shimmers and shiny hums, Talking Violet have created an ethereal, joyous track – but one that’s so thick and warm you can almost bathe in it. The band say the song’s lyrics are “largely inspired by… good friends and the way life can feel so easy with special people”. It’s appropriate, then, that Talking Violet are here to make your nights a little bit brighter.
Round Dreams, the latest EP from Talking Violet, is out now.