Upon a major shift in a musician’s life, an audience might be able to detect certain changes in output and perhaps their persona. Be it changing cities, going through a break-up or a death, or, in La Sera’s Katy Goodman‘s case, a marriage, subtleties in tone will permeate through the music, altering the course of the individual’s line of work, and creating a reinvention of sorts. “High Notes”, the first single from La Sera’s forthcoming album, Music For Listening To Music To, indicates a step towards the more uplifting, especially when compared to their last LP, and the fact that (now) husband Todd Wisenbaker is a permanent presence on guitar in the band. Sunny arpeggios set against a bop-and-go drumbeat immediately cast a big southern curtain over the stage, and Goodman’s caressing, yet invigorated vocals pump life into an old barebones caravan sound.
You picture an old banjo being plucked around a fire, or on the back of a pickup truck, but it’s just Wisenbaker’s impressive finger work on a six-string. However, while country twang and bright melodies may carry “High Notes”, Goodman’s lyricism is rooted in the reality of not allowing the past get ahead of herself. The chorus iterates, and reiterates, “Well I can’t sing it just the way you want me to / I might be tall but I’m not half the man you thought you knew,” showing that her life’s scars can still make for good songwriting.
Music For Listening To Music To is out March 4 on Polyvinyl Records. Oh yeah, and the record is produced by Ryan Adams, which is probably something worth noting in and of itself. You can stream “High Notes” below.