By Yasmine Amin, March 23 2018 —
Speak Low If You Speak Love is a hidden gem. The band was formed by Ryan Scott Graham, the bassist and backup vocalist for the pop-punk band State Champs. Straying far from State Champs territory, Speak Low has a completely different sound. It’s music for when you’re reading a good book on a rainy day or taking a long drive alone, taking you to a faraway place where your problems don’t exist. Nearsighted is the band’s second studio album and their progress since their debut is evident.
Opener “Have I Changed” introduces a refreshing sound that may break your Top-40 blues. You’re immediately sucked into a soft indie-rock feel and captivated by playful electronics. The band manages to find a home in the world where rock and electronic compliment each other perfectly. Throughout Nearsighted, each track has the same specificities but still remains unique.
The track “Enough” truly stands out. The presence of a funky bass riff throughout the song provides originality while transporting you to a different time.
Of course, every good album needs a break-up song. “Ever Yours” is the one you listen to when you just came out of a relationship wondering what went wrong and it speaks to the lovers out there that don’t react well to heartache. If you’ve ever heard “Clarity” by John Mayer, then “Cannot Have It All” and “Your Love It Rains” have a similar touch of magic. When I first heard them, I couldn’t stop smiling. The saxophone in both songs is like an unexpected spice on food. I think it’s one of the most underrated instruments and when I hear an artist incorporate it in one their songs, it just makes me happy!
Nearsighted closes with “Swell,” which is a perfect ending to a long but magical ride. The song poses the question of where a couple stands emotionally. I wonder if Graham will provide us with an answer in the next album.