The notion of changing with the times (especially as times darken) is something dramatic in and of itself, so a song rooted in such themes might well echo said drama. NY-based goth-pop band Seeming explores the weight of being confronted with shifts in normalcy on their track, “Stranger,” off their sophomore LP, SOL: A Self-Banishment Ritual, out August 4 on Artoffact Records. A quieted percussion and dismal, thickened piano sounds introduce a tension that remains throughout the song, as frontman Alex Reed immediately bellows the openings lines in his downright goddamn handsome baritone. The melody and tone, themselves, are as theatrical and curious as the subject matter of the lyrics, one complimenting the other’s sophistications like sommelier and chef.
Oh, and speaking of fine pairings, the song features none other than SAMMUS, whose eminence in the chorus serves as the reaction to Reed’s soulful soliloquy. He belts, “I am not who I will be / Rest assured I am not me / I move in rivers,” and she consoles, “When the world is a danger to you, will you rise up in rage or do you keep getting stranger? I do.” The chemistry is astonishing, like speaking to your conscience, and your conscience speaking back. Sammus picks up your wearied and life-hardened existence and carries it to safety, a fortification on an already powerhouse performance. The curtain closes on a world dying in both physicality and morale, but you’re left with a glimmer of hope, or at least a feeling of solidarity.