Today's Song of the Day, as chosen by Cheryl Waters, host of The Midday Show on KEXP, is "Something Wrong" by Hand Habits, from the 2023 album Sugar the Bruise on Fat Possum.
Sugar the Bruise, the latest LP from Hand Habits — led by LA-based artist Meg Duffy — was inspired by a songwriting class they taught back in August 2021. "It was both inspiring and terrifying," they shared via a press release. "I hesitated to consider myself a Songwriter, despite having released three records, let alone enough to teach others how to do it my way. In preparing for this course I examined my own approach with a close eye (at times too close for comfort). I realized how vital improvisation and collaboration are to me; in life and in songwriting. I was asked to design writing prompts, and although this was not typically how I would write left to my own devices, I found it to be a wonderful way to get the wheels of inspiration turning. I also cherished how special it was to see all of these other musicians, some new, some contemporaries, rising to the occasion and following themselves into the unknown."
"For Sugar the Bruise, I had no plan other than to let my mind go blank, and lean into the playful side of things. To laugh a little, to lighten up, to shift the focus off of my own experience a bit. What if making a song didn’t mean dredging up the abyss? Of course, at baseline I am pulled towards nourishing the unfolding of memory into something beautiful, something archetypal/universal, and sharing it with you. And like all good muses, it’s easy to project whatever narrative you are carrying onto them."
"The record was co-produced by my dear friend Luke Temple (Here We Go Magic, Art Feynman). We had worked together before on two of my songs and I felt inspired by the open plan, present moment, open approach to production Luke has. As a chronic over-planner, this got me out of my comfort zone of feigned control. I loved what we made and how I felt during those sessions, the doubt and fear being equal characters to the euphoria and pride. I think trust was the herald to transcendence. I was curious about exploring this further- making something out of nothing, with even less of an idea what might be birthed from the void. Alongside engineer/producer Jeremy Harris and brought over the finish line with additional production, arranging, and mixing by beloved collaborator Phillip Weinrobe, this record turned out nothing like I’d imagined it would."
Watch the official lyric video for the track below, and scroll further down to watch Hand Habits perform the track in the KEXP studios, recorded/filmed June 19, 2023.