Arts Desk

One Track Mind: The Sweater Set, “Simple”

Standout Track: No. 5, “Simple,” the lyrics of which inspired the title of Sara Curtin and Maureen Andary’s new album, Oh, Visitor. It’s a departure from The Sweater Set’s usually uptempo, ukulele-infused material, but the combination of electric guitar, classical guitar, and Andary’s vocals suits the lyrics’ quiet resignation about a relationship that’s fallen apart.

Musical Motivation: Andary began writing the song after breaking up with her boyfriend of 18 months. She started playing around with the bass line and then turned her attention toward the lyrics, crafted from her observations of post-breakup life. “It’s only my shoes on the floor anymore, it’s only my clothes in the drawer,” she sings. According to Andary, “it’s supposed to be a really sad breakup song but ... the catch is that it’s so much simpler to not be in a relationship.”

Change of Tune: “Simple” started out fairly slow and quiet. It lived briefly as an uptempo song with banjo, but Curtin and Andary quickly realized that didn’t work. After going back and forth about how it should sound, they finally recorded the song live in the studio last December. And while Curtin only contributes backing vocals to this version (live, she plays ukelele, too), she still finds herself immersed in the song. “I just get totally wrapped up in it when we’re doing it,” she says, “even though my involvement is so little.”

Listen to "Simple" after the jump.

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The Sweater Set plays an album release party at Strathmore April 26.

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