Song Spotlight: "Reno" by Side Sleeper | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Song Spotlight: "Reno" by Side Sleeper

click to enlarge Song Spotlight: "Reno" by Side Sleeper
Courtesy of Side Sleeper
Art for "Reno" by Side Sleeper
Pittsburgh indie-rock band Side Sleeper released their song “Reno” on August 27. The song is a hazy track with plenty of twangy guitar and thumping bass that you'll fall for in no time.

The band consists of Daniella Trimble on vocals and guitar, Ricky Petticord on lead guitar, Cormac Gartland on bass, and Tim Crammond on drums. Trimble, the lead singer, wrote the song, and the lyrics tell a story of the isolation and loneliness many have felt during the pandemic.

“I should have gone to Reno
just to see your grin in person
Don't mind the telephone
But I'd rather be there by your side
It hurts a lot to think about
the summer that will go by

Locked up inside
Locked up inside
Locked up inside
when I just want to be

In all our favorite places”

Trimble says the song came from a sharp desire during lockdown to see the people she loves.

“I wrote this song out of exasperation in the Summer of '21. My entire immediate family lives in San Diego (except for my dad, he's in Nevada) and they had to wait a long time for their turn to get the vaccine. I missed them like crazy; my personal life was falling apart, too,” Trimble says in an email. “All I wanted to do was lay my head in my mom's lap and cry. I wanted to keep my father company. I was having a hard time fathoming his loneliness, alone in a house in the desert far away from everyone he loved. Reno was my way of staying close. When I brought it to my bandmates it took almost immediately, the energy of the moment just oozed out of us all."

She adds, "This song is desperate and I hope it feels cathartic to listen to. It sucks so much that the release of it feels so timely (again). Get fucking vaccinated.”

My favorite part of “Reno” is the way it shifts and changes throughout. As it starts, it sounds like a summery beach listen. Toward the end of the song, it feels like there is an emotional redirection, a volta, for the poets out there, and the texture of the track changes to something a bit more chant-like, a little heavier.

Trimble’s voice is soft throughout but takes on a creeping nature as it rounds toward its end. The song shifts from playfulness to a sharp, distorted sound that really hammers home the intensity as it fades out.

“I should have known it at the time
the last time I stood looking into your eyes
Maybe if I had realized
The last time I stood looking into your eyes”

Despite the song's heaviness, it’s still one you want to bob your head and jump around to. I’ve never seen Side Sleeper live but I can imagine it's an invigorating experience based solely on my experience of listening to and analyzing this particular track.

"Reno" is now available to stream on Bandcamp.

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