The boy-girl pairing, soft jangly guitars and synthesizer make it easy to draw comparisons to groups like Beach House or the XX. But Symbols of the West are doing something entirely different, at least according to lead singer Nat Kendall. And we agree. “The worn red wine colored laquer and the soft nylon strings on the ukulele really played into developing the overal vibe of this song, the warmth, the richness,” explains Kendall. “I remember I’d carry that thing everywhere with me, especially in the car with the girl I was dating at the time.”
From there, the song evolved into a melody he’d “sing really softly” as they drove around. ”At the time, I was wildly in love with her fire and the crazy things we were doing together.” Once he had the chorus, “the lyrics came easy. I threw all kinds of different instruments in the mix to try and get the right vibe — everything from a fast poppy beat to a weird breakbeat with a reggae feel, juicy synths and strumming guitars.”
A perfectionist in the studio, Kendall admits that nothing felt right until he “sampled the pow wow and taiko drums.” But thankfully bandmate Lauren came in for the save with “the perfect synth line” that brought the single to fruition — a delicate ode surrendering your past and preserving your soul.
Symbols of the West’s debut, A Thousand Lights, is out February 26th.Symbols of the West - Save My City