Singer Emily Massey says a tunnel is just the right metaphor for the debut album by Modern Mod, the band she leads with bassist Alivia Kleinfeldt, guitarist Cal Pocernich and drummer Brendan Manley.
"Every song on Tunnels is like a tunnel listeners can crawl through and explore. Maybe the listener can fill the tunnel with water or light," she explains.
Isthmus asked Kleinfeldt and Pocernich to shed some light on the origins of four tracks from the album. Here's what they told us.
Kleinfeldt: The song was originally titled "Something with the Sun," because that's all the song is actually about: the sun. But before one show, someone wrote out our set list [with] "Something with the Sun" as the acronym SWTS. Cal thought the handwriting said SLUTS, so that's how the name came to be.
Kleinfeldt: This song was written by our previous drummer, Emma Witmer, about wanting to live in New York City. Now she does while attending NYU, so the song was a bit of a prediction.
Pocernich: I wrote "January" on Jan. 2, 2012. I wanted a song with a dancey but clean vibe and more emotional lyrics. I believe I wrote the date in the top-right corner of the page and used that to write the rest of the song. When I came up with the melody for the part that goes "Tell me one thing...," I thought I had stumbled across the best melody there ever was. But it took me a long time to pitch this song to the rest of the band, and I believe we didn't start practicing it until April of that year.
Pocernich: "Tunnels" is a medley of vocal melodies from songs on the album, but it starts with a motif from a song I wrote in 2012 called "Oh My My." We don't play "Oh My My" much anymore, but it lives on through "Tunnels."