A Deep Dive Into Andrew Bird's New Song "Underlands"
Andrew Bird spins existential angst into gold with “Underlands”, from his album Inside Problems (out June 3 on Loma Vista Recordings). Melding the exquisite elements that he is known for – plucked violin, strings, enviable whistling, the feeling of being whisked along the boulevard at night in your own Edward Hopper painting – with an obsession about our insignificance, Bird invites us to bob our heads along to the impending oblivion. Lyrics like “Stars don’t owe you anything / Don’t give a damn about your nation / Feel the slightest obligation / Ooh I can’t get over this moon” convey a sense of twitching discomfort in the midst of all the sonic luxury, accented by a danceable interplay between the drum and guitar scratch through much of the song. Those who had Greek Mythology on their Andrew Bird bingo card get to cash in with a river Styx reference here also, which is a perfect backdrop for this metaphysical subterranean expedition. “Underlands” is an elegant trip piloted by a captain bubbling with anxiety but cloaked in velvet.