Pat Coyle - "Long Soft Life"

There are few artists that trigger a level of introspection like Pat Coyle. Upon hearing his new single "Long Soft Life" I was shook to the core. The blissful combination of careful drum work, lo-fi sampling, and uniquely captivating vocals really sent me home. I say home specifically in regards to the audio samples pulled from a home video at the end of the track. The song is a incredibly intimate piece that, if listened to with undivided attention, will send you on a trip through childhood memories both vivid and vague. It was a very good trip for me.

I guess I (21) am really one of the last of a generation whose parents used a big camcorder to capture family events and important childhood moments. There was a greater purpose and a dedication to remembrance and appreciation of such happenings in the era before smartphones, etc. that made it possible to record so easily. For me at least, when looking back on old videos of myself alongside relatives, you can see the efforts that went into making it work for you, your siblings, cousins, grandparents, etc. Buried beneath those familiar smiles of your elders there are anxieties and fears of challenges life presents, but everyone puts that aside for these moments that mattered the most. For some reason grainy video and audio captures those times best in a fleeting, deteriorating fashion.

"I love you"... "I miss you"... *laughter* ... "Happy birthday, Pop Pop"... weaved in between dings and keys struck me in such a profound way. By the end of the track I felt as if my mind was just a tape rewinding and fast-forwarding in a loop through "the memories I love" and "the memories I hate." I think what I found the most interesting about the track is that although there is a emphasized link to the past in the lyrics and dialogue, I felt that "Long Soft Life" hinted to the future and what that holds, which is lovely and terrifying at the same time.

Per what I have been told, Pat Coyle expands upon the what was documented in "Long Soft Life" in a collection of related songs. On his upcoming EP Iridescent Cue (Out August 23), Pat explores emotional growth through the visions of a 1993 home video that set in Yardley, PA, which explains the audio bits you heard in this tracks. It is through these joyous scenes and palpable connections with loved ones, Pat thinks deeper and wonders how much these experiences have fed into a current misplacement of identity.

Pat will relocating to LA in September. Pittsburgh will miss him for his vision, kindness, and creative influence on others. His contributions to other projects like IT IT, Blød Maud, Soft Gondola, and others are definitely works that should not go unrecognized or unappreciated. I'll never forget when he hopped on stage during the Bat Zuppel MIRROR|RORRIM release and howled during "The Witch" or some other song. I was like, yup, this guy has it. It was only later that I started piecing together the other things he had been a part of. I caught a set of his earlier this summer, and I can say with confidence that this next EP will hold up well. I am excited to see what is next for Mr. Coyle.

You can catch his EP release show on Friday, August 23 at The Government Center, my favorite record store in the city, where he'll be supported by Natural Rat (WV), Anthony Heubel and the High Lonesome Band, and The Childlike Empress.

RIYL: Atlas Sound, Palm, IT IT, Panda Bear, home videos, the human experience, existential dread
Hot Take: Call your relatives and tell them you love them.

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Writen by Connor Murray (@craftedsounds)