Dogs – the furry friends so nice, ya gotta sing about them twice! That’s what Southend-on-Sea alt/indie trio in earnest have done anyways with their latest double single “your dog / good boy”.
The tracks are dedicated to two separate dogs – Murphy and Doug respectively. “your dog” asks Murphy the questions all dog owners have for their dogs, while “good boy” is an ode to the late Doug. As you can imagine, both songs are sappy tearjerkers. Lines that may look cheesy out of context (“Dog-bless wherever he roams”) fit perfectly in these songs, making them both endearing and intimate.
I think this is where I have to admit my bias. As a dog owner myself, I found myself really connecting to both tracks. Perhaps more so with “your dog”, as I don’t want to dwell too much on the grief of losing a pet explored in “good boy”. The second track is like a sad movie – not something you’d put on during your regular Netflix binging, but something you’d put on once in a blue moon for a cathartic and sentimental experience.
But anyways, I bring up my dog-loving bias because I don’t know if these tracks would be as relatable to non-dog people. However, it’s my blog and my review, so I’ll do what I want! But even if you aren’t able to view these songs through a paw-printed lens, these are two very strong singles. These songs see in earnest trade in the vocal tag team approach used on their eponymous EP for unison vocals by front-couple Sarah and Tom. This works well, particularly when the octave unison morphs into harmony in the chorus of “good boy”. The songs have excellent narrative structure – both lyrically and musically. This is thanks in large part to the band’s multi-instrumentalist Toby Shaer, who’s violin swells ring in the most climactic vocal lines. The magic of it all really comes together with the band’s lo-fi production approach (recorded live with Murph by their side), making for a highly intimate listening experience.
With this double single, in earnest gracefully pull off two heartwarming and heartbreaking songs about man’s best friend (without having to resort to any cheesy Redditisms like “doggo” of “flifferino”…). I’m happy to be writing about this band again, and as always, I look forward to what trio has in store next! Until then, dog-bless wherever in earnest roams.
in earnest‘s new singles “your dog” and “good boy” were released on March 12th.
in earnest can be found on:
Additionally, in earnest are hosting private virtual Zoom gigs. More info here: inearnest.co.uk/virtual-gig
FFO: Novo Amor, Gia Margaret, Better Oblivion Community Center