Getting Comfortable With Sports Bra
Throughout my entire life, I have searched for a sports bra that could provide me the comfort and support that I need. Now, finally, I have found it; in a band. Sports Bra released their debut album ‘Sports Bra’ this month and it is guaranteed to make you dance whilst simultaneously burning an ache into your chest.
Sports Bra’s lo-fi emo dream pop sound is driven by poetic, conversational lyrics nestled in warm fuzz-driven guitars playing beautifully interweaving and catchy melodies.
Sports Bra may be a newly formed band, but its members are well known in the DIY punk scene. The band includes four of the best songwriters and musicians Sydney has to offer; Allison Galligher who is well known for her insightful, raw poetry, Zoe Lane from acoustic project Dog Dirt, Naif from Hannahband and Passing, and Kate from Mortgage.
Lead vocals are shared between singers Allison, Zoe and Naif. The combination of Allison’s punchy bass lines and riffs, spectacular drum work by Kate who intuitively changes with the dynamics of each song, and Zoe’s dreamy lead lines laid over top of Naif’s rhythm, creates a sound one can only describe as unique.
The album is filled with hard-hitting emotions, exploring themes of self-care and preservation in a difficult world, misogyny, feeling like a burden to loved ones, existentialism, apathy and asking for help when you need it. It’s bold, open hearted song writing that will move you in every instance.
Opening track ‘Present Tension’ immediately reels you in with a strong, catchy bass line. Allison’s lyrics are deeply poetic, beginning with a metaphor that compares a body to a house that someone would ‘never wanna live in'. The lyrics read almost like a diary entry, and are incredibly honest and self-reflective; a theme that carries throughout the release.
Second track of the debut ‘Try Harder’, echoes ideas of influence brought up when Lane is asked about the new project:
“In terms of influences, we made an effort to steer away from a lot of the punk music we listen to, and have done in the past, and tried to have a more positive and poppy sound. Twee stuff like Rilo Kiley and Dolewavey. Bands like Dick Diver and some Shoegazey stuff too, but it's all sort of jumbled up. In terms of non-musical influences, we are all queer so that is important to us. As well as trying to do better and striving to be good people.”
The idea of “trying to do better” is belted out by Naif in a memorable moment on the album. Combined with gang vocals, the song feel like an anthem of being the best version of yourself. A true testament to using your space in the world for good, and as a platform to help people.
‘Leather Jacket’ perfectly reflects the frustration of queer and non-male people in facing the misogynistic attitudes prevalent in our society. Lyrics like:
‘I’m so tired of men explaining to me the subtle difference between hate speech and irony’
Sets with gritted teeth the tone for this empowering song.
‘What Should We Do’ notes itself as a cry for change in a cruel world, touching on existentialism and apathy. ‘Thank You For Being Alive’ is a call for healthy support systems in a city that will ‘spit you back out’. The line ‘the way we need to be held’ is sung with vocals that will rip through your chest with a pang of loneliness.
Sports Bra’s self-titled debut album is packed with raw emotion and an honesty that has an underlying sense of kindness. The juxtaposition between their heartfelt lyrics and their catchy and fun pop sound makes you feel good about feeling sad.
You can catch them supporting Jess Locke for their LP launch on November 11th at Beatdisc Records or at Sad Grrrls Fest in Sydney on November 18th.
Sports Bra’s ‘Sports Bra’ is one of the most important releases this year. Go listen to it. I dare you to feel something.
Follow Sports Bra right here.