Shortstraw’s new and catchy album: “Good morning sunshine” is showing its success by going viral across South Africa. This is the indie pop’s second album; however this album has proved to be their break though album.
A successful year
This year Shortstraw has seen many successes such as snagging the title of MK Award 2013 for Best Indie and opening for The Kooks. The album is produced by Jacques ‘Jambo’ du Plessis and Marc de la Querra from High Seas Records. Recording began in December 2012 and the album was released on 22 April 2013. Shortstraw’s originality is seen by their tweet on the 19 October: “We shooting the music video for Couch Potato today. Doing it all ourselves like we always have!” (See Shortstraw’s twitter page here).
Due to Shortstraw’s light hearted tone and indie pop band sounds very similar to other South African bands such as: Zebra and Girraffe and Desmond and the Tutus. However, there guitar parts are very intricate and the full time keyboardist furthermore adds to their originality.
Mood changing lyrics
Good Morning, Sunshine has listeners bobbing their heads and eventually unconsciously humming the contagious tunes. The lyrics of “Coach Potato” and “Good morning, sunshine” are easy to remember and are relevant to most people.
Shortstraw’s music is highly popular since it is relevant to South Africa’s youth. Declaring it’s going to get “cray cray” and that they “have jokes for days” in “The Wedding Blues” allows all teenagers to think about their own fun adventures. However some of their lyrics cause some controversy due to the occasional swearing and mild non-specific insults. However, their main aim is clearly not to be insulting but is rather to be happy and fun.
The band’s light hearted melodies have proved to consist of contradicting lyrics. For example, when lead singer Alastair Thomas sings “I’m black and blue but I’ve got this swelling under control” in their song “Boxing Day” and “walking out the door is so dishonourable” in “127 Hours” one get’s the idea that there is a dark depth to their songs. This can be thought to be a positive fact since it shows that life is not always easy, even for artists.
This album is definitely worth buying because it expands the genre of indie pop in a South African context. The music is suited for all types of moods. Happiness can be felt by the easygoing melody and the raw emotions in the lyrics can dive into the listeners’ emotions. (Listen to the full album).