For over a decade, Through The Sparks’ indie psych has resonated with music fans and critics alike. Singer Jody Nelson’s dark subject matter along with the band’s complicated instrumentation has made them one of the more unique bands in the genre. Yet, on their latest album and third overall, Nelson took a more positive tone, and its reflected on the tune we’re premiering today. “Self Immolation” features heavy jams that would make Crazy Horse proud.
“Human sacrifice is a running theme on Transindifference,” Nelson explains. “It’s one thing that turns up in every culture and mythology, and is just bizarre, even in the most vanilla, missionary-style American suburban Christianity—it’s the basis of the thing. So, I wanted to look at it from every angle.
“As for inspiration for ‘Self Immolation,’ there were a string of self-immolations—six or seven of them—in 2013 during the Bulgarian elections, during a state of political unrest. I, admittedly, don’t know much about the details, but it was politically and economically focused, which seemed so bizarre to me. Religious reasons would make more sense. The first person to die was a photographer/mountain climber/adventurer type. He died on the Bulgarian equivalent of the Fourth of July, a couple of weeks after setting himself on fire ceremoniously in front of a municipal building. With ‘Self Immolation,’ I reset the thing from an American perspective, so it takes a much more absurd turn, naturally. It was originally titled ‘The Fifth of July.’
“I wanted to work in a sense of apprehension and images of the mundaneness of American weekend/holiday culture for contrast. The structure of the song might say more than the lyrics themselves about the actual act of kneeling down on a white sheet and dousing oneself with gasoline and striking a match. The outro takes on a giant overblown guitar-rock persona, which is both earnest and decidedly American. Not holding back some of those tendencies on this record was a conscious decision as well. Honesty through inauthenticity and fiction.” LISTEN HERE…