Apes & Horses – Seas
Usually an over-refined, blatantly romantic tune like Apes & Horses’ “Seas” weaves its enchantments together so thickly it ends up leaden, but give this one a listen and just try resisting its gorgeous, spare, sea-swept desolation. The track is instantly cinematic, its opening notes carving out an airy space the plaintive vocals proceed to fill with majestic heartbreak. The Parisian quartet uses precise minimalism to create a supremely tasteful and stylized atmosphere. Every beat, every curl of melody, every flourish of hissing hi-hats is in exactly the right place. Here and there it verges on being a little too impeccable for its own good, as slick as a haute couture photo spread, but the line “Up above the sea/There’s something/You’ll never believe in” cuts to the essence of the lover’s lament and speaks to the artful nakedness of the song: getting past cynicism and doubt is the whole point of this beautiful and visionary ballad.