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On “Settled Down,” Mike Kinsella Is Still Sad, But Not As Sad As He Used To Be

The king of Midwestern emo explores a fuller sound on a new Owen song.

June 16, 2016
On “Settled Down,” Mike Kinsella Is Still Sad, But Not As Sad As He Used To Be Shervin Lainez

Mike Kinsella, of legendary emo bands American Football and Cap'n Jazz, is premiering a new song from his solo project Owen's upcoming release, The King of Whys. (A friendly reminder: he's released some great, genuinely affecting songs under this alias over the years.) New one "Settled Down" starts with a signature melancholic Kinsella riff, but gently segues into more expansive production, only serving to augment the song's earnest vulnerability: Torn between giving in and getting lost for good, he sings.

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"I tried to make the drums on this song sound like if The Cure wrote a math rock song (not sure if I succeeded)," Kinsella told The FADER over email. "Also, there's a big piano strike that I lifted from my favorite Radio Dept. song — 'The Worst Taste In Music.'" Like both of those iconic bands, Kinsella has particular knack for turning unfiltered spates of emotion into songs that swell and flow beautifully, and "Settled Down" is no exception. The King of Whys is out July 29 on Polyvinyl in the U.S. and Wichita in the U.K./Europe.

Tour dates:

8/01 - Toronto, ON @ The Great Hall
8/02 - Ferndale, MI @ The Loving Touch
9/15 - Somerville, MA @ Arts At The Armory
9/16 - New York, NY @ Rough Trade NYC
9/17 - Philadelphia, PA @ PhilaMOCA
11/21 - London, UK @ St. Pancras
11/23 - London, UK @ The Forge
11/24 - London, UK @ The Forge
11/25 - London, UK @ St. Pancras

On “Settled Down,” Mike Kinsella Is Still Sad, But Not As Sad As He Used To Be