Cathartic indie-pop from San Luis Obispo, California.
Indie-pop duo Soft People will officially release "The Absolute Boy" November 13. Popdust offers you a first-listen today.
Based in San Luis Obispo, California, Soft People is made up of Caleb Nichols and John Metz, a married couple. The two met when Nichols recruited Metz to play the drums in his Oakland-based band Grand Lake. Soft People, formed in 2017, started out as a bedroom recording project in Atlanta, Georgia, and later relocated to San Luis Obispo.
"The Absolute Boy" is a highly subjective song, inspired by Nichols' battle with PTSD, the result of years of abuse as a child. The track is Nichols' attempt to wrap his head around generational domestic violence, and addresses his own abuse as well as the abuse his abuser suffered in his own childhood.
Opening with a pop-lite bop feel, "The Absolute Boy" rides shimmering guitars atop a tight and crisp groove. The flow of the tune, bright and buoyant, belies the dark subject matter. A throbbing bass line drives the tune along, as the drums establish an upbeat cadence. Strident synth accents infuse the music with taut colors, adding sonic pressure, as well as stark passionate energy.
Nichols' high tenor presents tones of utter emotional desolation, as he reveals the sense of psychological tarnish meted out by his abuser. On the chorus, Nichols exposes not only his vulnerability but his attempt at emotional catharsis.
"Before you hit me / Before you clipped my wings / I was the absolute boy / I was him absolutely."
"The Absolute Boy" is absolutely heartrending in its remembrance and elucidation of anguish.
Randy Radic is a Left Coast author and writer. Author of numerous true crime books written under the pen-name of John Lee Brook. Former music contributor at Huff Post.