I can’t even count the number of times I’ve written about Ladyhawk. Too many. Definitely too many. No one devotes this much time to another band, unless that band happens to be fronted by Bruce Springsteen or Neil Young or something—but the thing about Ladyhawk is that what they mean to me personally has pretty much transcended anything they will ever do as a band. It makes for a weird position as a writer, knowing that they could release an instrumental album made up of pure feedback, and I’d probably still find a way to hear it as a meditation on growing up and how it actually turns out that, hey, adult life isn’t so much easier than teenage life—you just have more control over your own bad decisions. So here’s “You Read My Mind,” the first new Ladyhawk song in a bunch of years. Lead singer Duffy Driediger put out what was basically a power pop album under the name Duffy and the Doubters not too long ago, though. You can hear its influence in this track. “You Read My Mind” is a more compact Ladyhawk, a dense couple minutes of malaise and sadness that, if you listen to it enough times, starts to feel comforting. Maybe that’s why Driediger has made such a career out of singing the word “alright.” It showed up in “Teenage Love Song” years ago as a desperate plea—singing I’ll be alright in a voice so strained that it was clear that he or the teenage version of him would actually not be alright at all. It shows up here again—calmer, smoother, dragged across the guitar and then swooped up, assuring us that anything fucked up we could possibly do in our adult lives is okay. Driediger sings about the same things as always: getting high, getting drunk, being alone, being frustrated. But what he doesn’t sing is lying there in his voice, an implicit understanding. In Ladyhawk’s world, sadness is what you make it, and they make the hugest bummers seem worthwhile. No Can Do, Ladyhawk’s third LP, will be out October 9th on Triple Crown Audio.
Download: Ladyhawk, “You Read My Mind”