Song of the Day: The Rosebuds - In My Teeth

Song of the Day
09/11/2014
Jacob Webb
photo by Amber Zbitnoff (view set)

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters, is “In My Teeth” by The Rosebuds from the 2014 album Sand + Silence on Western Vinyl.

The Rosebuds - In My Teeth (MP3)

Formed in Raleigh in the early 2000s, The Rosebuds' melodic indie rock is fueled by the complex chemistry of singer/guitarist Ivan Howard and keyboardist/vocalist Kelly Crisp. Formed when the duo were at college in Wilmington, North Carolina, the band was picked up by local institution Merge for their first record, 2003's The Rosebuds Make Out. From there, the band embarked on a consistent touring and recording schedule, releasing an album close to every two years. After the release of 2011's Loud Planes Fly Low, Crisp and Howard spent the next two years primarily working on other projects, revisiting the Rosebud for a Christmas album and a cover of Sade's Love Deluxe album. Their sixth and latest album, Sand + Silence, was the first recorded after Howard and Crisp moved to different cities (Portland and NYC, respectively) with a slew of their long-time friends and occasional collaborators, including Justin Vernon, Matt McCaughan (Bon Iver), and Nick Sanborn (Sylvan Esso).

Today's featured song, "In My Teeth", moves with the kind of understated tension that drives the Rosebuds best work. Howard's smooth clear vocals float through the band's steady rhythm section, walking the line between alluring and disquieting ("And you found a way to see me/I hold you in my teeth"). Ghostly rounds of vocals and layered keys and guitars swirl as Howard brings the song to a sudden, understated conclusion. Although they could have gone for a dramatic, sweeping chorus or climax, The Rosebuds wisely choose the more subtle path, as they have so many other times, on "In My Teeth", underlining that in romance, so many of the more quiet, unspoken actions speak louder than the grand ones.

The Rosebuds have already finished a short bi-coastal tour, including a stop in Seattle, and won't be playing next until Austin City Limits festival in October, but keep an eye on their website and Facebook for any updates on new shows or music. Below, watch the band play "In My Teeth" live on KEXP last month.

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