The Shins are back, 5 long years after successful album –Wincing the Night Away. With the release of Port of Morrow just recently, lead single ‘Simple Song’ is a brilliant expose for eager fans.
Despite weighing it at 4 minutes and 16 seconds, ‘Simple Song’ requires around 2 seconds for you to realise that there is nothing to worry about. This is vintage Shins from start to finish with a flurry of jangling guitars, beautiful melody and Mercer’s simple vocals that soar throughout the song. Moreover, despite the Shins void being taken up by bands like Fleet Foxes and Band of Horses, the song makes the band sound needed, bringing a level of cheeriness and being a welcome return to alternative pop.
The lyrics do present a bizarre mix of nostalgia and metaphors, but overall paint a delicate picture of raw emotional: “I swear that I dreamt your face on a football field/ And a kiss that I kept under my vest”. And yes, it may have a slightly cheesey power-pop edge to it, but it works. This is classic Shins; unpretentious and just trying to bring a bit of joy and sunshine into your life.
It really is a simple song and a perfect nugget of light-hearted indie pop.
Good: Classic Shins, with melodic guitars and Mercer’s trademark vocals
Bad: The good might be the bad – the band might need some musical development