Cal In Red Negotiate With Juvenility In Their New Single ‘Zebra’

Harnessing the shimmering qualities of Beach House and Tame Impala, the Michigan duo perforate through a sun-kissed moodscape with their own fastidious strain of poolside indie-pop.

“I finally think we have one that’s gonna make them dance.” – says frontman Kendall Wright, sat front and centre in his cousins basement studio, gleefully swivelling round on his chair with a wry smile etched across his face. Connor, his brother and fellow band member, meanders across the room with an exhilarated gait, buzzing like the end of a faulty jack lead; totally cognisant that the glass ceiling of bedroom production has just been royally smashed.

In African tribal folklore, the zebra symbolises the polarity of right and wrong, a monochrome reminder to maintain a balance in your life, no matter how busy or crazy it gets. In a way, this record sings from the same hymn sheet, the tenor being a trip through the looking glass and head first into the rambunctious culture of youth.

This isn’t a smear campaign however — the antithesis if anything. It celebrates the budding nihilists and bright-eyed individuals that are embarking on the arduous task of self-discovery as they enter adulthood. To change or not to change, that is the question in this case, but a zebra doesn’t have to change its stripes, nor should it have to.

As I’ve gotten older, the realisation that I’m not the centre of the universe has kind of hit me like a brick. A lot of people (myself included) grow into this belief that we’re the most important person on the planet, and that’s a dangerous, privileged spot to be in. Sure a Zebra is unique if you’re contrasting it to a horse but guess what, there are fields and fields full of Zebras out there. I’m learning to rethink and break habits that, overall, were keeping me from a greater appreciation and understanding of everyone around me. I guess it’s a call to realisation and growth. 

Kendall Wright

This is the sort of music you’d licence for a gentle meander down a lazy river, watching untroubled as a dazzle of grayscale beasts blithely saunter across the unbroken herbaceous layers of the Savanna. It’s illusory properties spark from the swirling backdrop of capacious synths and Kendall’s diaristic narrative, inducing a pensive immersion in the psyche of an early 20-something.

It’s true that birds of a feather flock together, and if you were to pertain to satire for a brief moment, you could go as far as to say that these Wright Brothers are flying sky high.

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