Twin Sister: A Perfect Second Draft

Color Your Life

3 min 22 sec
Twin Sister i

Twin Sister's willingness to post demos lets listeners map out what makes "Lady Daydream" so seductive. courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption courtesy of the artist
Twin Sister

Twin Sister's willingness to post demos lets listeners map out what makes "Lady Daydream" so seductive.

courtesy of the artist

Friday's Pick

  • Song: "Lady Daydream"
  • Artist: Twin Sister
  • CD: Color Your Life
  • Genre: Pop

The wonderful thing about a song like "Lady Daydream" is the way it represents that timeworn, chicken-and-egg enigma: Which came first, the sound or the concept? The track's seductively ethereal sound so nicely complements the words that, at least as a listener, there's no way to pin down which element inspired the other without a little research. Luckily, Twin Sister — the Long Island quintet that authored this gem — happens to be forthcoming about its creative process, openly posting demos to its website.

"Lady Daydream (Cassette Version)," available on the band's site, helps settle some questions here: The words provide connective tissue between the demo and the final aesthetic, although the musical skeleton remains intact. A proper kit has replaced the drum machine with little change to the beat, the introductory synth melody has a more full-bodied timbre, and a reverb-drenched guitar steps in for the secondary synth line in a particularly successful adjustment. Textural manipulations like static, mini-drones and graveled percussion help round out the sound, along with the repeated piano note — a touch which gives the piece the same sort of immediacy as Broken Social Scene's "Anthems for a Seventeen-Year-Old Girl."

Basically, the comparative success of "Lady Daydream" doesn't lie solely in improved fidelity, so much as a far more nuanced set of tone colors: By the time singer Andrea Estella coos, "If you forget it all, I will bring it with me," the atmosphere has listeners hooked. The ability to carve out a space like that — to emulate a mood that's already mapped out in words — is no easy feat, and yet Twin Sister makes it sound effortless. What a difference a second draft can make.

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