Vagabon, “Shadows”

Katie Capri

There’s something soothing about the early autumn sun. Maybe the growing distance between the sun and the earth’s surface throws an extra glint on the leaves, shimmering warmth over them as they transition before drifting away from their familiar branches. The same shimmer, however more visceral that strictly visual, comes through on the first track from indie folk newcomers Vagabon.

“Shadows” turns over your emotions in a way that is also uniquely autumnal. The band says themselves that their music is intended to make you sad but this track is more bittersweet than morose. The opening guitar line shifts back and forth over an ethereal whir of strummed chords. It feels like the wind in your hair, driving through a woodland as the leaves change.  As she sings about cross-country moves and eternal blue moons, Laetitia Tamko’s breathy, soulful voice sounds like a comforting mother, reassuring the listener—and perhaps herself—that you are all you need to weather great change.

“Take me as I am. Clothes or bare with despair.”

The track tells a story of finding company in your own solitude, camaraderie in your shadow, following your own lead. As the volume builds with tense anticipation, a yawning guitar line opens up, running acutely behind the murmuring chords until it builds into a frenetic squall. Underneath it all, you can hear the anxiety of change. A sense of frantic reassurance in a composed lullaby to oneself.  “Shadows” sounds like a reminder of where to focus your gaze when the emotions, or external noise, becomes too much to bear. That you are the one with the strength to shepherd you through life’s changes.

Stream the debut of “Shadows” below. Vagabon’s first EP Persian Garden, comes out this Friday on Bandcamp and on tape this December via Miscreant Records.

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