Tomberlin – ‘Projections’ EP review

Sarah Beth Tomberlin follows up 2018’s beautiful ‘At Weddings’ album with her new EP, ‘Projections’. This release follows appearances on Jimmy Kimmel and tours with emo heroes including American Football, Alex G and Andy Shauf.

The EP opens in subtle style with ‘Hours’, an understated song that reminded us of Tim Kasher’s solo material with its use of strings and powerful observations about sacrifices and the power of past loves: ‘Remember when we stayed out and took turns playing songs, My favourite game. I never felt ashamed in your embrace.’ Following this is the recent single ‘Wasted’, a quietly experimental piece of alt-folk that neatly leads into the swirling soundscapes of ‘Floor’. This atmospheric song finds Sarah Beth recalling trying to escape an anxious time in her life when even movies couldn’t break up uncomfortable silences and bouts of loneliness as she looks for self-preservation: ‘I try so hard to take it in, take every breath with a clear head’; ‘I tried to sleep too but you made it look so easy’.

‘Sin’ opens with a burst of slacker pop hooks before becoming more of a pining love song – but with levels of Jeff Tweedy-esque sadness peeking through the surface: ‘Time goes by so quickly when I’m standing next to you and every day is pretty when I wake up turned towards you’; ‘I wait by the window and write some shit and hope that you reply’. The song finishes with luscious harmonies as Sarah Beth pleads: ‘Say a prayer, lay your hands on me, I just want to be clean’. The EP finishes with a touching and goosebump-inducing, mainly acoustic, cover of Casiotone for the Painfully Alone’s ‘Natural Light’: ‘I’ve walked around with you on my mind. The names we used at the time. You know I’ve changed myself since then’.

‘Projections’ is a collection of powerfully affecting and intimate songs about the human condition and self-discovery.


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