Cat Grenier

Cat Grenier

Sound + Music Dork

© 2019

Now, Not Yet by half•alive

On August 9th of 2019, Now, Not Yet became the first album to be released by the indie pop band half•alive. The album consists of 12 tracks in total, one of which is a 30 second interlude that is purely spoken.

Maybe, the third track on the record, is about the changing of a point of view and how we have the ability to switch perspectives. One of the most interesting parts for me is the synth part at the end of the song. It almost sounds like a telephone ringing. The Band intended for just that and wanted to insert an interlude to act as a phone call. However, the interlude is only one half of said phone conversation. You as the listener are then left to guess what the other person is saying. The audio is from a voice message that the band’s choreographer had with a friend and the band said in an interview with Rock Sound that it was “better than [they] could have ever written”.

BREAKFAST is by far my favorite song on the record. It’s title, instead of being the meal, BREAKFAST, is talking about the breaking of a fast. That fast is a fast from being open and vulnerable. The lyrics of the chorus demonstrate this with lines like “Letting my guard down, Enough to be held close” and “There’s strength in the open, The broken and exposed”. The song itself feels very comforting to me as it repeats “It’s a second chance, It won’t be your last” at the end of every verse. The tender vocals are paired with a very clean backing track of what sounds like acoustic guitar, and synth, with very minimal drums during the chorus.

This song transitions incredibly well into the song creature. In this song, the band is conveying two ideas about humans from their faith. Which is that humans are not only perfectly handcrafted beings by god, but fallen irredeemable sinners as well. The conflict between these ideals is what drives the song. This is made most clear by the line “I am creation, both haunted and holy”. This track possess similar instrumentals to BREAKFAST but has more synth than guitar. Both of these songs remind me of If I’m Being Honest by dodie or Ally by Danny Padilla. However the half•alive songs do stand out as very much having their own sound.

To me, this album is well crafted with the exception of the song ok ok?. The band told Rock Sound that it’s purpose was to tell the audience “Immediately this isn’t the album you expected”. Although this was accomplished I don’t think it was in the way it was intended to. This isn’t the album I expected only because I expected the tracks to sound more like ok ok? but instead it’s the only song of it’s kind on the record. This song starting off the album sets the wrong precedent for the listener. I feel that it would fit better as the last song in the record for a couple of reasons. First of all, although it is “ear catching” it isn’t a song you can really sit down and jam out to where as the rest of the album is. The song feels like it is closing out the record with a more experimental sound and tone but instead it is giving the audience a confusing first track. By listening to all of the tracks in order, I was under the impression that there would be much more experimenting in this album and the pace would be much more lax but I was proven wrong immediately in the next song. I don’t have a problem with ok ok? As a song, just it’s placement and what it’s conveying to the audience about the record.

These are just some of the highlights fromt the album but I suggest you go and check out all 12 tracks for yourself!