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Sunless

by Floating Room

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about

The type of sadness felt at 4 in the morning, reserved for the heartbroken and nervous, is a tender and surreal one. The world feels like the wrong size; the moment small, quiet and solitary, the rest of the day foreboding at a gargantuan scale. It’s a moment of contingency and introspection, and it’s soundtracked by Floating Room’s new album Sunless.

The record tracks the end of one relationship and the beginning of another, with lyrics and a sound that comprehend every aspect of this delicate time. Maya Stoner and Kyle Bates, Floating Room’s creators, are able to channel a heightened level of intimacy and emotional competency with their combined musical history and shared personal connections. “Kyle and I were discussing writing and recording at a house show when the idea of collaborating first game up. I had a lot of love and respect for Kyle’s project, Drowse, so I was excited to see how his brain worked,” recants Stoner. The melancholy, textured aspects of Bates’ aforementioned project meld well with Stoner’s past experimental guitar rock bands, Sabonis and Forest Park. They meet in a place of sensitivity and experimentation. With the assistance of bass player and frequent collaborator Alec Van Staveren, Floating Room has classic emotive aspects that also include electronic influences and dark beats and bass lines that work to transcend the usual bedroom tape project. With a name referencing the gloomy weather of the band’s Pacific Northwest home, the album is evocative of overcast despondency–but refuses to wallow.

“We started playing music together when we started dating, writing these short, confessional songs and capturing them with our cell phones; we quickly discovered a mutual love for artists like Mirah, The Microphones, Duster, and Bedhead.” Bates and Stoners’ gendered voices, musical compatibility and parallel perspectives of growth are audible. Stoner’s lyrics appeal to relatable feelings whilst staying specific enough to tell her story, with Bates sonically interjecting his own. Finding lyrical inspiration in conversations had with her female friends, Stoner uses unabashed dejection and candidness to create a new form of emotionally charged and empowered music, self-described as “gray pop.” On the crushing track “Fun,” Stoner proclaims her strength by using past insecurities and hesitations to detail the feeling of being silenced by oppressive systems and individuals, but finding resilience within those experiences. Stoner’s vocal power backed by buoyant guitars makes for a song set to inspire.

The intimate confines of the bedroom in which Stoner and Bates record and create together are heard in the warmth and indulgence of each song, bookmarked by personal clips of the two exchanging questions or the whimpering of a dog. But, with each track their cozy realm grows. Sunless is the sound of sharing fears, and becoming stronger as a result.

– Emma Burke

credits

released November 18, 2016

Maya Stoner - guitar, vocals, drums, synths, beats
Kyle Bates - guitar, synths, samples, vocals, sound manipulation
Alec van Staveren - bass

Recorded by Maya Stoner and Kyle Bates between December 2015 and August 2016 in houses in NE Portland, with the exception of "Canvas", recorded by Maya Stoner in 2011.

Lyrics by Maya Stoner (except "Sick Day" by Kyle Bates).

Music by Maya Stoner with contributions from Kyle Bates and Alec van Staveren.

The cover art is a collaboration between Nellie Papsdorf (photograph) and Maya Stoner (illustrations).

Band photo by Mikey Duran.
mikeyduranphoto.com

Mastered by Parker Johnson and Quinn Jarvis-Holland at Oligopolist
home.oligopolistrecords.com

Released by Good Cheer Records (GC-018) - for more info, contact info@goodcheerrecords.com

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Track Name: Sad God
“sad god”

letting go
of something that you still love
I still had plans for you
and all the things we’d do
but now I just can't believe

oh my sad god
look at what we've become
I thought I believed
but was I the only one?

the light
still shows
in the night
it still glows
but the darkness is so deep
and I'm afraid I am too weak
but now I just want to be strong

to be strong

oh my sad god
look what we've become
I thought I believed
but was I the only one?
oh my sad god
forgive me for what I have done
believe that I believed
in the only golden son (sun)
Track Name: Dead Weight
“dead weight”

strange men walk around
isolated
with a chip on their shoulders
they are looking for a smile
from you or from me
but instead I find myself leaving

use me
abuse me
just don’t
confuse me

our first kiss went like this
like a stomp on the face of a quarter about to roll away
my best friend wrote a poem
and I cried at the line
“you think I have nothing to say”

so use me
abuse me
just don’t
confuse me
save me
crave me
hold my hand
drag me down
Track Name: Bed
oh my darling
it’s alarming
how we lose track of the time

if a tide came
and we needed a life raft
I think this bed would do just fine

let’s start a fire
and burn all we wish to leave behind
all that’s required
is that you keep your secrets
and I keep mine
Track Name: Warm Death
paint fumes and cold rooms
who i was
young love and drug use
who i am

isn’t it such a good thing
that I’m not sad like I used to be?
isn’t it such a good thing?

why do my eyelids sometimes feel like
warm coffins for my eyes?
if nothing else happens
then will I be surprised?

isn’t it such a good thing
that I’m not sad like I used to be?
isn’t it such a good thing?
Track Name: Fun
oh I want to be the one
who walks in the sun
oh how I want to be the one
who has all the fun

but everyday
a mirrors held up to my flaws
and I try hard not to give into
the idea that I should be small
so what's the takeaway
when I am constantly faced with doubt?
you think my angers unfounded
you think I have nothing to say

oh my heart is continuously breaking
I used to think this world was mine for the taking
all the fear I feel has been learned
I was born brave but I've been burned

oh I want to be the one
who walks in the sun
who walks in the sun
oh how I want to be the one
who has all the fun
who has all the fun

but everyday
a mirrors held up to my flaws
and I try hard not to give into
the idea that I should be small
so what's the takeaway
when I am constantly faced with doubt?
you think my angers unfounded
you think I have nothing to say
Track Name: Driving
when i get back home
gonna crack you like an egg
on the side of my bed
you reside in my head

draw me in
moth and flame

it’s not your job to shake
me awake
yet you do it anyway
that’s what drew me to you
like a moth and flame

if I touch your heat
I may never be the same
but i know your warmth
will shelter from the pain

let me sleep within the sheets
of your head
keep me around
and I’ll keep you grounded
I’ll shake you when you need it
I’ll wake you when you need

driving to your house
I think I must be someone else
because I’ve never felt like this before
driving to your house
Track Name: Sick Day
two creatures
on a decaying pumpkin
a whole
I told you things I shouldn’t have
the first person
who has tasted
the depths of my belly button
Track Name: Canvas
I asked myself for something more
than just another pessimistic point of view
and all I could hope for
is to start over new
and be a blank canvas to show in front of you

I will try to
start over new
and disprove to myself
the things I think are true
and I will try
my best with you
because though I don’t believe in much
I do believe in you