We’re pleased to bring you the premiere of Geometers‘ new song “If/Return” (listen below). The track is taken from the band’s forthcoming album Pay To Live, which will be released on December 2nd through Jetsam-Flotsam and Codependent Records. You can pre-order the album here.

Geometers guitarist/vocalist Kyle Pollard comments:

“Lyrically, the song is about the cycle of abuse we put ourselves through while working through depression (‘self abuse in everything I do’). Also how we internalize pain because it’s less attractive then being outwardly honest about our emotions, and how that makes things worse (‘these are things we always talk around/act as if we’ve got it figured out/waste my days buried in doubt’).

David came up with the title which is a very common string found in most programming languages. It’s a play on the first line which is about standing on the train platform edge, imagining a secret code in the warning strip they may or may not be enticing people to jump in front of trains (‘if I could read he Braille underneath, would it save me from my latest defeat/would it push me to the rail or would I stay’). We (I) are (am) the variable in the ‘if’ clause of if/return.

Musically it’s one of the most dynamic tracks on the record. Very HUM and Sunny Day influenced. I actually wrote the skeleton, long before Geometers fleshed it out, on an acoustic guitar, definitely channeling Jeremy Enigk. David and Sam make it huge.

It also features Gordon Withers on cello which was a fucking honor. Gordon played with J in the excellent Office of Future Plans. To have him playing on our record was truly special.”

Pay To Live was recorded and mixed by J. Robbins of Jawbox (who has also produced bands such as The Dismemberment Plan, Against Me!, Murder By Death, Modern Life Is War, Braid, and Shiner, among many others) at the Magpie Cage in Baltimore, Maryland. Mastered by Dan Coutant at Sunroom Audio in NY. Album artwork created by John Cox and layout by Kyle Pollard.

Pay To Live is made up of well-orchestrated harmonies, gently plucked melodies and rolling rhythms that give way to more abrasive vocals, drastic chords and powerful percussion. The sound is something in the realm of Dischord Records’ repertoire, which makes sense given the fact that the band has a Dischord release under their collective belts after band member Sam Wadsworth recently recorded bass tracks for Red Hare (members of Swiz) earlier this year. The theme of Pay To Live, as the title aptly suggests, is about struggling to get by in the “adult” world: dealing with loneliness in the modern world, having little self-worth while masking emotion in everyday life to get by (described in the song “Patsy”), losing those close to you (“Spring”), or contemplating what could have been (“Twin”). Produced by legendary producer/mixer/engineer J. Robbins, the album’s sound is sharp and precise, allowing for all of the skilled musicianship and intricacies of each instrument to be heard even amid the strength of their sound.

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