I don’t know about your student council but the DJs at my middle school never tapped into tracks quite as atmospheric as this new song by the Philadelphian duo School Dance. On “Slow Motion”, Sam Tremble and Allison Lorenzen layer smoky smooth vocals and spooky vibraphone melodies over a steady, jangly drum beat. True to its name, the tension between frantic percussion and eerie singing makes you feel like you’re trying to sprint but a cloud of atmospheric pressure keeps suspends your movement in dark, thick air.
The song is partly about the School Dance origin story. Sam and Allison met in a serendipitous art store encounter on the predicted apocalypse of December 21, 2012—an eerie date to start a band.
As Sam explained to me,”Slow Motion” also explores another unsettling encounter had by the band.
“[W]e saw an old woman knocked over with a bloody nose and tried to help but her friends didn’t think anything was the matter besides her embarrassing appearance.”
Both signs of the end times, one in the abstract and the other on the sidewalk, lend an oxblood shade of context to the ethereal track. The closely mic’d cymbals could represent the anxiety of living in a time when these types of floating, foreboding interactions shed a dark light on the unsavory future we may already be living in.
Stream the debut of “Slow Motion” below. You can check out more of the duo’s spooky sweet tracks on the School Dance Bandcamp.