Big Theif’s Shark Smile did a better job than any movie this year at capturing that innocent summer of love.
When your a kid, summer is the ultimate symbol of freedom and possibility. As an adult nothing again so magically captures the symbol of freedom, not even summer. You start to forget if those summer nights of magic will ever steal you away again. But sometimes out of the blue something or someone comes along that steals you away from your normal life. For a moment your free again, then its over. You go back to your normal life and for better or worse your secret summer is over before you even realized it began. This is the feeling that Big thiefs single Shark Smile captures.
The wondering electric guitar that opens the song backed by drum fills and crashes sound like the end of a song not the beginning, setting the song up with endless possibilities of where it could go. By the time the folky chug of the rythm section comes in you wonder what could happen next. With sparse electric guitar and a few pretty “woos” scattered throughout the song could seem a little typical. The magic lies in the lyrics and vocals of frontwoman Adrianne lenker. “It came over me at a bad time, but who wouldn’t ride on a moonlight line.”
As an adult who has to work all year round to pay the bills it can be easy to let the summer pass you by without ever feeling that sense of freedom you had as a kid. But occasionally, if you forget about the bills and the job, you can slip out of time and for a brief momet feel like your 12 again with no neason to worry about anything until school starts again. Hearing Adrianne’s beautiful voice sing “Evelyn’s voice was oxygen I leaned over to take it as we went howling” brings me back to a summer I don’t even remember having every time I hear it. Shark Smile could be an easy song to overlook but along with Big Thiefs new album Capacity its a perfect soundtrack to these laid back summer days and nights.