By coincidence, we are perhaps starting to associate Savoir Adore with the end of (holi)days. The last time lead song architect Paul Hammer and company were in town, we were trying to make the most of the final weekend of spring break. This time, our understanding of love comes almost too late, with a final shot at Rickshaw Stop with fellow NYC kids Paperwhite and Sofi Tukker this Friday before fall semester.
Since we last spoke with Hammer earlier this year, the band has released a victorious third album that sounds exactly like the summer we’re already beginning to miss.
“The album tackles themes of love, loss, and the often-inescapable darkness of memories,” he proclaims. Themes that are rather common in the industry but emboldened this instance by the circumstances: it’s been a busy few months for the band, between doing their first tour with a new lineup, tying the knot (multiple times), and The Love That Remains out now via Nettwerk. And singer and songwriter Lauren Zettler — who took Deidre Muro’s place recently as the Savoir Adore’s key female vocalist — brings her own side of the story to the conversation.
Hammer also describes The Love That Remains as more realistic than Savoir Adore’s past work that was heavily anchored by 2011 breakout single and go-to show finale, “Dreamers.” And sure enough, songs like “Crowded Streets” paint everyday scenes (album closer “Night Song” is meta enough to say it’s their “last song”), but their signature whimsy isn’t entirely absent. Vivid lyrical metaphors can be found throughout, from lead single “Giants” (“If you build your house of bones, you’ll never be alone / […] / Throw your heart in the river, if you can’t let go”) to “Paradise Gold” (“You learn to get low / The future flows / Dreaming in colors unknown / My lips are rough to your touch / Smoother than paradise gold”).
As expected, the production is more polished, in a way that works despite the band’s former lo-fi, shoegazey style. The percussion parts now have enough depth to truly fill the international stadiums the band found themselves on after the success of Our Nature (2013), and the crisper guitar melodies seem better suited for Savoir Adore’s characteristic and, as Hammer would say, “yin yang”-style male-female vocal harmonies.
Given what Hammer set out to do and the departure of co-founder Muro, The Love That Remains succeeds in its mission as a pivot, evidence that Savoir Adore’s main tenets have only enhanced with age.
Article by Joanna Jiang