A few days ahead of their fourth album I Feel Alive, Montreal indie-pop darlings TOPS unveil its wonderful opening track “Direct Sunlight.” It’s a radiant and summery offering which brims with optimism. Nostalgic but not melancholic, it actually sounds like the soundtrack of a vintage romantic movie. On top of her heavenly vocal delivery, front-woman Jane Penny also unleashes a euphoric flute solo encapsulating the excitement of budding love or new spring. Speaking on the song, she said:
I went to this outdoor pool with Olympic style diving boards one summer day in Berlin, and when I tried to jump off the middle one, I think it was about 5 metres high, I really surprised myself when I realised that I’m terrified of heights. My whole body entered this panicked state, the phobia kicked in right away, and I had to do the walk of shame down the ladder and back to the pool. I wanted to capture that duality, the way that even the sunniest days can have this underlying darkness to them, and how it’s not just the physical reaction to fear that casts the shadows, but more how the ever looming possibilities of loss or discontent are revealed. I wrote this song to remind myself that it’s up to me to choose the perspective that I take.
With four bangers already revealed, TOPS‘s new album I Feel Alive is undoubtedly one of the most exciting releases of early 2020.