Wednesday, December 19th, 2018

Sam Tudor – New Apartment

Well, it’s a better ad than the Startup Castle


[Video]
[5.62]

Matias Taylor: There’s something simultaneously comforting and deeply lonely about modern apartment living, about the way in which it packs us in between people yet is anything but conductive to a feeling of community. It’s the feeling of having your own warm little bubble in the middle of the roiling cauldron of everyone else’s lives. Sometimes you hear people through the walls or see “the stains from the ones before” on the floorboards, reminding you of how your presence in that space is only temporary. In between these modern refuges and anxieties, Sam Tudor has captured something essential about the way young people live their lives in cities in this day and age: it’s there in the way the guitar plucks consistently through the chord changes, which at times threaten to turn into something eerie and discomforting before being anchored back to the familiar main progression; and it’s there in how he mixes grand imagery, from washing up after a storm to the Big Bang itself, with small, intimate details of a living space that is ours but never truly ours, because eventually it will end up being someone else’s. More than any other song this year, “New Apartment” understands the dread, malaise, and sometimes freedom and release in a transient life.
[10]

Juana Giaimo: “New Apartment” reminds me of the late ’00s, when Bon Iver influenced many indie artists. Sam Tudor’s voice is deeper, but he also uses the double vocal harmonies over a quiet acoustic background. But I find the vocal melody too repetitive, and I wish it was as interesting as the tension that builds up in the background with the violins and the eerie trumpet sound.
[6]

Stephen Eisermann: The discordant violins do an excellent job of setting the stage for Sam’s haunting vocal and lyrics to take flight, but the electric guitar lick and the harmonies really take this song to the next level. The song invites an existential dread to overcome you, but it makes the dread less ominous and almost welcoming; so you’re stuck feeling like you’re not enough, but also sort of smiling at the thought of that. It’s all very cool, if not fucking terrifying.
[7]

Alfred Soto: The bass grounds it, the brass section adds wryness, and Sam Tudor sings the hook with the confidence that he’s written a good one. Plenty of songs unintentionally celebrate withdrawal; “New Apartment” celebrates private spaces as temporary escapes.
[7]

Vikram Joseph: I’m fascinated by the emotional mechanics of moving — the psychological detritus we leave behind us like an invisible watermark, the disproportionate sense of mental upheaval that moving to a new apartment 15 minutes away creates, the disorientation of waking up amongst strangely-shaped walls in the middle of the night in a strange room that’s yours, now. “New Apartment” touches superficially on some of this, but feels incredibly grey both musically and lyrically, drawing from a limited spectrum of emotions and revealing very little about its protagonists. A minimalist acoustic folk song needs to be lyrically incisive; as a chorus, “Everybody needs a place to hide / in your room, safe inside” is anything but. This could have been a great song, written by someone completely different.
[3]

Joshua Minsoo Kim: Is the humdrum guitar strumming meant to be the aural equivalent of staring at colorless wallpaper? Is the repetition of the very direct, “In your room, safe inside” line meant to express anxiety via banality? Is it the song’s intent to sound completely emotionless? None of this is justified; no element here moves beyond a surface-level investigation of the subject manner.
[2]

Katherine St Asaph: Sometimes a new apartment is just a new apartment. I mean, what is there to say? The album title literally has “quotidian” in it; it’s musical off-white walls.
[4]

Anna Suiter: This song isn’t remarkable by itself. When I listened to the audio by itself I could barely convince myself it was worth listening to. The video makes it worthwhile, though — it takes the slightly unsettling mood of the song and magnifies it. Sometimes a song is vastly improved by context, even if it’s just some visual effects and good camera work.
[6]

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