Tugboat Captain – Day To Day (Double A-Side Record)

Tugboat Captain – Day To Day (Double A-Side Record)

The second single to come from their forthcoming album with Day To Day Tugboat Captain match Martha-esque wry lyrics, Beirut-level brass, and a multitude of pop influences for a gloriously melancholy track. 

Tugboat Captain

Artist: Tugboat Captain
Track: Day To Day
Label: Double A-Side Record
Released: 18 September 2020
Find it: Bandcamp | Spotify

Bleak: cold, miserable, inhospitable. It’s the draughty house on the windswept moor, the endless pale face at the window yearning for a love which will not be kind. It’s the workhouse, and more sir, and the grind of hardship. Bleak is midwinter, and Victorian, and the literary romanticism of poverty. Bleak is all this learned imagery. It is also very now.

With Day To Day Tugboat Captain reflect, without grandiose sweeps but with touching detail, the real feeling of bleakness in the modern age. With Martha-esque heart-rending and wry lyrics, and Beirut-level brass, melodically this track is upbeat with hints of melancholy.

Reducing down a life to the simple win of being able to ‘pay for my own smokes’, of ambition being inverted at the reality of shopping only from the whoopsied aisle in the supermarket, and recognising hope takes more fortitude – perhaps more than you’ve got left in you – than resignation.

‘And I am resigned to never own my home / I’m not designed for hope’

With the fullness of potential held in the joyous and scrappy melody it is juxtaposed against the ennui of the lyrics, and the heart-rending familiarity of the realisation promises of hard work leading to comfort and success are empty, were maybe never anything more than a mirage to keep our shoulder to the wheel.

Originally released as a demo for their 2020-cancelled SXSW jaunt it’s the matching of their wonderfully punchy pop sound, the clear fun of music making ringing in every note, with the lyrical desolation which makes not only the song but the band very special.

Day To Day is heartbreaking, and beautiful. Amid the everyday lyrics it brings comfort with the warmth of brass and the ascension of strings. A stunner of a single, it will resonate with Gen-Z in a way which raises a familiar smirk of knowing with Gen-X, and apart from bringing hope in its own lyrical surrender should make us all very excited for the album to come.

Day To Day is the second single and closing track from Tugboat Captain’s forthcoming album, Rut, due on Double A Records in October 2020.

Find Tugboat Captain: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Bandcamp | Spotify

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Sarah Lay

Sarah Lay is editor of Popoptica.
A long-standing music journalist she's also co-founder of independent record label Reckless Yes, an author of novels, and when not messing around with words and music, a digital strategist.
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