“Tears of Joy” by the Welsh band Twin Stranger opens with a synth tuned to Farfisa organ droning atop an undeniably melodic bass line that signals the beginning to an incredibly ambitious power-pop song with hooks for days. Centered around the interplay of the synth and bass, Twin Stranger weaves in overdriven guitars that shimmer and streak across the track’s sprint towards the end, dipping into heavily distorted power chord riffage during the track’s bridge and absolutely soaring during the chorus. Elements of disorienting shoegaze reverb soak in through the fabric of “Tears of Joy” propped up by the towering superstructure of that brilliant bass line. According to the band, the “tears of joy” spoken of in this song relate the passage of time that happens so suddenly that it takes us unawares, according to singer and multi-instrumentalist Alex McConnachie the track was written:
“from the point of view of a couple in the not so distant future, looking through a scrapbook of their lives with fond but hazy distant memories of first loves and exploring the world together. It’s about not taking things for granted, what might seem like the mundane 9-5 grind now, could turn out to be some of the best moments of your life. It’s about not wishing those moments away.”
This sentiment is deeply felt on this track. Proper nouns, exact years and feelings with distinct time and place locality abound in this heavily nostalgic but ultimately sweet song. What started as a bedroom pop project is brought into the studio and its output is something that sounds like it could easily fill a cavernous music hall. Fans of bands like Superdrag, Matthew Sweet, Walt Mink and even contemporary shoegaze bands such as Blankenberge should definitely take note.