There’s a special feeling that driving around alone in the summer holds — a feeling so specific that it can be hard to capture through music. Yet fearofmakingout’s new EP NO A/C is the musical manifestation of this feeling, and an excellent exploration of loneliness.
The EP is heavily inspired by the group’s own surroundings. fearofmakingout, composed of Marisa Harrington, Jacob Kellen, Cesar Cruz and Ryan Moreno, is from Phoenix — and the Arizona deserts they live in have influenced their sound greatly, seemingly seeping into their instrumentals to create “lone ranger music.”
Kicking off with “BEES,” a dreamy track that’s sung with mesmerizing flow, the EP is a stunning blend between elements of indie rock and hip-hop. Its lyrics reflect on loneliness in ways that turn isolation into something to be cherished, something that almost feels nostalgic. “I’m phoning home, I’m on my own, I often loosen up,” Moreno sings at the end of “BEES.”
Of course, loneliness doesn’t come without some sadness. In “OLDHEAD,” against a backdrop of dreamy instrumentals that all seem to blend together, Moreno contemplates: “Am I too old? I’ve got no role to play, it’s all going down.”
In its instrumentals, the EP doesn’t shy away from experimentation. Near the end of “DOWNSIZE,” gently sung lyrics quickly pan from side to side, almost waking the listener up as the relaxing song comes to a close. And while mostly relying on catchy, upbeat guitar melodies, the group doesn’t shy away from tastefully incorporating elements of hip-hop. On “PORT,” autotuned musings lead into a resolve of strong, distorted drums.
Although it’s hard not to feel lonely right now, this EP is a gentle reminder that it’s possible to find peace in solitude, whether it’s by driving around alone in the summer or simply just contemplating as the band does.
Listen to NO A/C here: