You’ve probably seen this by now – it’s been making the rounds since Future Islands appeared on Letterman in early March.
If you haven’t seen it, watch it now. If you’ve seen it, I don’t care how many times, watch it now, again.
What is it about this damn thing? I’m not sure I can put my finger on it. Obviously Samuel T. Herring’s performance is insanely joyous (possibly literally, but we won’t think about that). And of course, “Seasons” is a helluva great pop song (and the best one on their fabulous new album, Singles).
But I think what makes Herring’s performance so infectious is its complete and utter sincerity. It’s rare nowadays that you see anybody treat anything, and of all things, not indie music, with pure earnestness. But Herring’s lyrics are full of raw sentimentality and emotion. He keeps it honest – most Future Islands songs are about searing pain and heartbreak, because that’s life, yo – but even amongst the suffering he holds to his hope. “Don’t believe what you’ve been told,” he sings at one point. “People lie, people love, people go / But beauty lies in every soul.”
That’s wonderful. And it’s inspiring because we all feel those things – we feel them hard and rough and raw and it’s enough to make you want to cry. So when you see something honest and true, it speaks to you.