Life’s not perfect, and human beings are the opposite of infallible. The best we can do is try our best, a mantra my mom programmed in my brain ages ago, and still becomes active whenever I have to do something that is new or scary or filled with uncertainty. It helps to explain why I instantly sympathize with Sweet Nobody’s second album which is titled We’re Trying Our Best. The circumstances in which this album came to live were far from ideal. There was of course the curse of the pandemic: We’re Trying Our Best would have been released 12 months ago in a pandemic free world. More importantly, singer/lyricist Joy Deyo had to cope with chronic pains caused by a hard-to-diagnose ilness while writing the record. And yet, rather than a dark or sad record, We’re Trying Our Best sounds more like a celebration of life. Press play on Five Star Diary and let the indie pop of Sweet Nobody wash gently over you. It showcases the gorgeous and melancholic qualities of Deyo’s voice and how it complements the jangly and breezy guitar licks perfectly. It’s not the only standout track on the record; uptempo songs like Rhoda and White Lies are instant attention grabbers as well. I am also intrigued by Other Humans and If I Should Die Tonight, two emocountrypoppowerballads that pull at the heartstrings. [post continues below]
The band cites Felt’s Maurice Deebank, Johnny Marr, and the Go-Betweens as influences, and I won’t be surprised to see many reviewers compare the band’s sound to Alvvays. It is a justifiable comparsion, but if you listen to the whole album, We’re Trying Our Best is very much able to stand on its own. Suffice to say, Sweet Nobody’s best is good enough for me.
(Note: We’re Trying Our Best should be out today through Daydream Records. But the label is in shambles right now (actually, I have no idea what’s the case there, but it doesn’t look good) and the band pulled out of the label. So for now, it’s digital only and the band is looking for a new label to put it out.)