INDIGO DE SOUZA: I LOVE MY MOM
Indigo De Souza released a new heart-melting album, I Love My Mom, on Friday, June 8, 2018. Upon listening to the first lick of the LP, one can instantly get sucked into the powerful lyrics and intricate instrumentals of every song on the album. An artist previously labeled as a talented variance, ranging from garage punk and pop, to more intimate and acoustic styles, Indigo De Souza has swept the Asheville music scene with eloquence, and has created an intimate soft-punk experience within I Love My Mom that is perfect for an upcoming generation of expressive, emotive, passionate people.
Throughout I Love My Mom, the impressive convergence of genres is apparent, as we see some songs, such as “How I Get Myself Killed,” “Home Team,” and “Sick In The Head,” produce more exciting, provocative, and loud tones, while still keeping the slow, sad-girl, intimate undertones that are more prominent in songs such as “Ghost,” “I Had To Get Out,” and “What Are We Gonna Do Now.”
As an album exploring youth and the human experience, it appropriately begins with Track 1, “How I Get Myself Killed,” an expressive and relatable recollection of youthful recklessness and exploration. The song’s lyrics, although subjective, can play into the theme of a memorable and reckless youth as overseen by parents, society or loved ones. The song begins with powerful repetition of the line,
This is probably how I get myself killed.
This can be interpreted as a common phrase said by adults, parents, people that care about you, or even just one’s conscience during rebellious or exploratory times in their lives. The first lyrics we hear besides the title discuss the speaker’s “firsts”:
Did you say anything on the night of my first sin,
on the night of my first kiss,
on the night of my first runaway?
These firsts can be somewhat generalized to listeners, therefore making this an audience anthem of the battle between personal exploration and resulting disconnection. This song sets this wild-child theme that is apparent in the rest of the LP, as well as playing on a prominent tone of nostalgia that is equally as clear.
The second track, “Take Off Ur Pants,” maintains a very catchy beat, along with a soothing repetition in the rest of the instrumentals. The vocals in this song are unique to the rest of the album as we hear a more consistent and glossy tone. All of these components that create a pop vibe work with the lyrics to create a commentary on pop culture today. On top of the catchy beat, the song continues the repetition that is typically found in pop songs with lyrics that always end with the line:
Like everybody else
This can be interpreted as a play on the assimilation everyone feels subconsciously within society. Playing on previous themes, this unanimous understanding of assimilation is usually most noticed during our youth, and this is discussed within the lyrics that reference school, weak relationships and assumptions that everyone else has it figured out:
When am I gonna go back to school
Like everybody else does
Everybody else does?
When am I gonna start being cool
Like everybody else is
Everybody else is?
The third song on the LP, “Sick in the Head,” begins as much more provocative and intense as the previous two, and immediately begins to work with the tone of nostalgia and themes of reckless youth within its lyrics:
When we were walking out
To that vacant house
Without any context this can already be associated with young rebellion, as trespassing and exploration is common amongst it, and the past tense implies reminiscing. We clearly feel the nostalgia later in the song:
I go back to that house sometimes
Say what I need to say
These lyrics suggest growth apart between individuals, making this song one of the most prominent in the tone of nostalgia.
The fourth track drastically contrasts with the prior song, the lyrics of both songs push the tone of nostalgia and themes of growth and reminiscing on childhood recklessness. The fourth song, titled “What Are We Gonna Do Now” seems to stem from “Sick in the Head” as another commentary on growth and the realization of time.
What are we gonna do now, sweetheart?
You still haven’t cleaned the kitchen.
And we’re still on hold with the nurses
When are we gonna wake up
In some cubicle cell with our shirts tucked
The lyrics and slow tempo provide a theme of life after youthful freedom, and the unanimous confusion of a generation in what they’re supposed to do with their lives, and how they get to where society wants them to be.
The fifth track of the album is titled, “Home Team.” This song discusses young relationships placed metaphorically in supposedly a high school sports setting.
I knew I was ready
To stop going steady
When the home team was losing 20-1
The diction in this song’s lyrics correlates with the culture of high school relationships (going steady), and the rest of the lyrics suggest a need for growth from this type of ignorance and assumptions of our youth in regards to love, sex and relationships, while still playing on a tone of nostalgia for that careless period of our lives, although there’s a touch of condemnation in this intense, exciting tune.
“Ghost” begins subtly, and beautifully represents the title through spooky, dark, wistful undertones. In progression with the rest of the LP, this song works with the previous track as we begin to see growth from the beginning of the album, which focused on youthful recklessness and nostalgia for it. Now, in the latter part of the album, we feel an understanding being reached. “Home Team” focused on an abrupt rejection of previous norms, such as high school relationships. “Ghost” now focuses on the growth and coming into one’s self that only comes from self-awareness.
I am not as lonely
As I think I am
As I feel right now
I just don’t need you
Like I thought I did
In your arms at night
Playing off of the previous song, using relationships to comment on one’s self growth, these lyrics can be related to listeners as we all go through people and times in our lives where realization of false perceptions helps us to grow as individuals.
Continuing with this progression and growth, the second to last song, “The Sun is Bad,” continues to use relationships in the overall themes of the LP, but works individually and uniquely as a form of a breakup/growth song.
And I cannot take no more
The sun just don’t rise up
For me this time
These lyrics make this love/breakup tune a little more complex, as well as the mixture of multiple genres is most prominent within the instrumentals. Maintaining the garage-punk sad girl vibes, Indigo also manages to provide an intimate experience with this song by incorporating quieter and more pop-rock tones.
The final song on the LP, “I Had to Get Out,” finishes the album’s story and sound with a dramatic and intense, yet uniquely quiet and more acoustic, tone. With barely any instruments throughout the song, the ringing vocals pierce through the silence to create an intense and intimate experience. This song resolves the turmoil amongst the album in regards to youthful rebellion and recklessness, nostalgia, and growth, with a voice of reason and a mature farewell.
I had to get out
My body couldn’t weather the drought
And if I could’ve stayed
You wouldn’t see me this way
But we don’t always get what we want.
The progression of the album, chronologically, is reminiscent of classics such as The Beatles, wherein each song compliments the next to a point where the whole album is a beautiful story of complicated youth. In addition, Indigo’s ability to incorporate varying styles within her voice resembles singers like Angel Olsen, Meg Duffy, or Molly Burch.
Overall, this album is nothing short of a success, as we continue to hear the magical, wistful, intimate vocals colliding with some experimental instrumentals. It is obvious this album reaches a deepness within a rising expressive community that needed to be reached. Welcome to the soundtrack of reflection and progression!