Tash Sultana’s first single- Can’t Buy Happiness- has been released since the release of Flow State in August 2018. And it’s still the same soulful Tash, but more (musically) stripped down and will certain reach more people.
When I first listened to Sultana’s Flow State, on the way back from work- a 40 minute commute, I really didn’t know what to make of it. There were influences of blues for sure, but there was such an ethereal vibe to the music that was so wild I couldn’t feel grounded in it yet. I had to keep listening. And also find out some lyrics- cause words are how I connect to music the best sometimes.
The gender-queer, free spirit that is Tash Sultana is incredible playing live. It’s as if they are not even themselves, but their own music. I was fascinated watching Tash seamlessly uses their bare feet to change between several different pedals for various guitar sounds.
What I’ve seen from some of the best live artists in intimate performances is that they get lost in a trances and YOU CAN SEE THEM COMING OUT OF IT as the song ends. It’s so mesmerizing to see someone so passionate about what they’re feeling, not just what they write.
Anyway, Tash’s new single still has that reverb-heavy sound to it, but this time I can understand the lyrics so much better! Their vocals are still beautifully dynamic and soothing like buzzing aural silk…but I can actually hear what they’re singing about! And it’s a simple plot in the song. The narrator is lost in a time before, unable to reach the present. The past is where all the happiness lies.
“Come home to freshly folded up clothes/ And I take the time that I’m given/ Blame it on myself”
This line seems to capture that sense that everything in your life can be organized, arranged, and put-together, but it all boils down to happiness. Perhaps happiness that was given up for the wrong things.
“And I’ve tried all of this/ And it don’t mean a thing”
Tried what? The point is, if you are reaching out and TRYING, that means there is something to find, something to fulfill. Perhaps the character in the song doesn’t understand themselves and what they want, so they try. At least they are admitting to what they are missing now. The memories. The love- the things that kept them content- without trying.