Sun Kiss taps into thoughts of longing, loss, and excess with his new single “Fresh Air”. A perfect summer anthem for the sleepless nights you’re bound to experience, this song is a definite musical highlight for 2021. Sun Kiss has always excelled at the kind of hazy bedroom indie architecture that creates a definite sense of intimacy, but here he takes those strengths to deliberately make something that focuses intently on keeping things at arm’s length. For those longing for the days of late 2000s indie acts like MGMT, Sun Kiss is certainly a spiritual successor. The lyrical content is dream-like, grounded in a genuine heartache that’s almost muddled by the mistakes that linger in the narrator’s head.

“Thinking over til I’m sober again/Wanna leave you, but I ain’t losing a good thing”, it’s an introspective piece that I think will strike a chord with a very particular audience. The instrumental is pitch perfect with the twirling guitar that the track begins with to the almost haunting fade out like drifting to sleep from a night of partying. A lot of the concepts explored are seen through a refreshing dual lens as even when the singer talks about the insane nights, by the time that the chorus comes around for the last time it almost feels like this cry for help. “I see another life/I wish it was mine/I want a second chance but I don’t have the time” hits you in the chest like a bowling ball with how much truth it contains, especially for those who feel out of place in their lives with seemingly no easy way out.

The vocal work is soothing despite the pain and the backing female harmonies are a perfect touch that also lends itself to that almost ghostly feeling, as if the narrator is haunted by the memories of the lover who he’s at a crossroads with. Sun Kiss knows there’s such a thing as too much of a good time, and it’s a level of excess that I think isn’t explored enough in music with this much thoughtfulness put into it. There’s a lot of contemporary acts who take the approach to “Hey, sometimes partying is bad” but still manage to glamorize it in some shape, but here Sun Kiss takes an exhausted approach that lingers with you well after the end. This track serves as the precursor to Sun Kiss’ self-titled album and I hope that means he’s only going to dig deeper into a more personal narrative as is felt on this track.

There’s a lot of doom and gloom in the track, but there’s a slight window of opportunity and happiness that can be found, but it comes with knowledge that you have to let things go. This could have been a run of the mill indie hit about social and relationship ennui, but what it transforms into is nothing short of a musical miracle. It’s a cheap punchline, but yes this track is a breath of fresh air in the stagnant musical world we’re in.

Garth Thomas