The Memory Fades creates dreamy pop, bittersweet below the surface, a dream from which you awaken with the sensation of having passed through the home of a former lover. A timelessness pervades their new four-track EP, “She Loves the Birds,” with musical modes and melodies that are simultaneously familiar yet free of the genre-defining shackles beloved by the writers who attempt to describe them. Lyrically, The Memory Fades explores themes that are as unstuck in time as their music, each song a note handwritten and burned, trusting the wind to carry the ashes to the intended recipient.
The EP’s title track forms the soundtrack to a modern-day Casablanca, lovers living in a crazy world of hate and hopelessness, flying away, not on a plane to Portugal, but on their own dreams and desires: “ignore the lies of the papers /can’t you see that they hate us / please don’t let the hope be gone / we’ve all just got to hold on”
“Picture of You” and “Am I Losing You” are classic songs of life and loss, the brightness of the sound creating a gauzy curtain that obscures a dread of ever-lengthening shadows. Has the singer regrettably deleted all traces of a formerly significant other from his social media feed? Or is he a person of a Certain Age faced with the realization that he can no longer summon the image of a loved one from the cloudy recesses of his fading mind? The latter track describes equally the separation that always occurs when two people expand their world views, and the loss of intimacy felt by a parent whose child has wandered into the busy street of adulthood: “every time I see you / you’re getting taller all the time / when you don’t see me / I’m getting smaller in your mind”.
The final track, “Mining for Diamonds,” is a pure Love Song, the anthemic declaration of devotion that each of us desires to pen – for someone, anyone -† before we depart.
The Memory Fades is a new band – based in Durham, UK – created by Stephen Maughan, previously of Kosmonaut and Bulldozer Crash. In the words borrowed from his Bandcamp page, “His previous bands have had varying degrees of very little or no success at all, but he enjoys writing songs and making music and is quite happy to be just a never was.” If “She Loves the Birds” is a fair indicator, and the universally-sought Justice in the World exists, Stephen‘s obscurity may be at a merciful end. You can chart his incipient rise to fame by following The Memory Fades on Bandcamp, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
The Memory Fades and “She Loves the Birds” appear on the newly-reconstituted Sunday Records, a Chicago indiepop label originally founded in 1990. Be sure to check out their catalog, including a new release by LIPS, on the Sunday Records website and follow Sunday Records on Bandcamp, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.