Caroline Polachek (Pang) - Finback Brewery (Late Afternoon)
Since its release in October 2019, I haven’t been able to stop thinking and playing Caroline Polachek’s album, Pang. Her work with the group Chairlift is where most people will recognize her voice. Their last album, Moth, got me excited to learn more about the group, especially Polachek. Her voice gripped me, and the song, “Crying In Public,” is one of my favorite songs ever. Pang captures the pathos of that track, spreading its emotional honesty throughout the album.
The title track’s lyrics foreshadow the rest of the writing in the album. “There's a look in your eyes when you're hungry for me/It's a beautiful knife cutting right where the fear should be.” Throughout its runtime, Polachek dips her lyrics in areas of fear, love, looking into the void not knowing where to go next, and self-reflection.
by Finback Brewery
I pair this masterpiece of an album with Finback’s Late Afternoon Imperial Stout. Brewed with ginger, brown sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon, its dark body camouflages the sweet, comforting flavors. The body is thick, going down your palette at a slow pace so you can appreciate all the flavors it has to offer. The ginger and cinnamon are very upfront, but not so overpowering to make this stout to sweet. It’s delicious, boozy, and it clocks in at 10%. It’s something to sip on at the end of the night to lose yourself with your thoughts. You don’t chug this outstanding brew but enjoy it slowly. Appreciate all of it. It pangs into you almost immediately. Just like the beer, Polachek addresses the darkness that can surround someone’s life, but there’s always something hidden that you must discover for yourself in order to enjoy everything around you.
Pang (Caroline Polachek) & Late Afternoon (Finback Brewery)
Every song on here is on another level. It feels like you’re drifting into this fantasy world with her guiding you. “Hey Big Eyes,” has this sweet harp introducing the piece, then it’s contrasted with a hip-hop like a drumbeat to get you out of the fantasy. It twists your thoughts on the song that you think will be another soothing melody, but it injects itself with a lot of energy. Songs like “Go As a Dream,” are so mellow and calming, yet the words hit you like a bullet to the heart. It’s a reoccurring element to the album; its production is very dream-like, where you find yourself lost in the track, only for Polachek to sing, “I Give Up.” The twists and turns of this album keep me coming back. I’m still discovering bits and pieces of it as I continue to listen to it. The chorus too, “Door,” to me suggests who is constantly chasing something or someone that might want them gone for their own good. Within all these moments of melancholy, there is a comfort to be found in the gorgeous production. “So Hot You’re Hurting My Feelings,” will forever be a song that you can lose yourself to. It’s one to blast by yourself to take in the lyrics but has those cathartic moments to dance. “And I'm out at a party, they're playin' our song/I cry on the dance floor, it's so embarrassing/Don't send me photos, you're makin' it worse/'Cause you're so hot, it's hurtin' my feelings.”