Written by Travis Shosa
The brainchild of Philadelphia native David Pride, Nostalgiaisfun flirts with obsessions of the past while consciously aware of the dangers in doing so. Since embarking upon the project in 2017, Pride’s music has consistently evolved while also looking back, from his vaporwave EP Dream Tape in 2019 to 2020’s indie rock album Nostalgiaisfun 2, which hinted at the dream pop, shoegaze, and emo sounds that would come to define its current iteration. This more committal approach was signaled by “Dreams in a Witch House,” the first single released in the wake of Pride’s LP. And while in 2021 he only released a handful of singles, the new songs keep coming in 2022: ranging from the seven-and-a-half minute slow jam “Night Shift” to The Garden-style punk-rapped “SLOWDIVE!”–named for one of his predominant influences–to his collaboration with LyteSpeed, “BEGGING FOR LOYALTY.”
His newest, “Sink Into Your Soul,” makes for a full dozen this year and the third this month, coming just ten days after “Body.” While it proceeds in a similar vein to Pride’s other recent material with its dream-like nature, it’s also the heaviest and noisiest Nostalgiaisfun has gotten, earning its comparisons to Nirvana and Sonic Youth. Call it grunge-gaze: thick bass, pounding drums, brittle cymbal crashes, and harsh guitar textures are barely contained by the recording as they swallow up Pride’s vocals and drag them down into a pit of darkness. “Drown me in your pain / Carve into my skin / And I’ll carve in yours / Then we’ll both be linked,” he cries, describing an unhealthy but potent co-dependent relationship, going so far as to compare it to drug addiction (“We’re chasing dragons”). Still, he acknowledges that it ultimately does little to address the root of his suffering. “The pain will never go / Even if you’re with me,” Pride sings. He’s trapped himself in a cycle of perpetual temporary fixes, powerless to escape.
For more Nostalgiaisfun, you can listen to “Lilac in Bloom”:
Travis Shosa is the founder and editor-in-chief of Stamens/Pistils/Parties. Formerly the runner of COUNTERZINE, he has bylines at Pitchfork, The Alternative, and Post-Trash among others.