This week on Tracking––a weekly series in which we discuss our favorite songs of the year (you can check out the official list as the year progresses)––you can listen to additions from DIIV, Cat Power, Jessie Ware, Purity Ring, The Vaccines and The Ty Segall Band. (Click on the arrows to navigate through the songs.)
DIIV: “Home” (1 of 6)
At its best, DIIV’s debut record, Oshin feels like standing in a cavernous room with hazy beams of light coming in from slits in the walls. The light is immediate and pleasing yet there is also the sense that one is ensnared in something ominous. The final track, “Home”, is built around this eery juxtaposition. Zachary Cole Smith sings “you’ll never have a home/ you’ll never have a home” before completing the tautology with the very next line: “till you go home.” It is a simple yet haunting sentiment, like something a recovering drug addict scribbles on a napkin and reads every time he feels weak.
Wrapped around this refrain is a warm, drifting melody that laps up against Smith’s words. Everything about the song is peaceful – the sparkling guitar, the fluid bass line, even Smith’s tone of voice – yet the words being spoken are subtly off-putting. It is an atmospherically complex song that, much like the rest of the album, invites earnest and thoughtful speculation. Then again, you could just ignore all that and enjoy it while doing something else on the Internet. –– Drew Malmuth