words: Sarah Hojsak
Who would’ve guessed that 2017 would be the year for songs about public transportation? It’s only April, but we’ve already been completely taken with Jay Som’s “The Bus Song,” and now we have a train tribute, too, in the form of Harmony Woods’ “Jenkintown-Wyncote.” Of course, what makes both of these songs feel so resonant, so familiar, isn’t that they’re about a mode of transportation, but that they capture the ways our mentalities and relationships exist within this kind of setting. Harmony Woods’ Sofia Verbilla has clearly spent a lot of time on SEPTA’s Regional Rail to and from Philadelphia, but she sings about the draining commute in a way that reflects how it’s shaped her thinking and self-awareness. “I lift my head and all I see is a dark tunnel surrounding me / For a second or two, I question if it's all really worth it,” Verbilla sings on the track, which is lead single from Harmony Woods’ upcoming LP Nothing Special and is named after a train station in the Philly suburbs.
The Harmony Woods project, which Verbilla describes as “lo-fi by circumstance,” has quickly become a favorite of the local public radio station, who write that Verbilla’s “captivating vocals … shake with equal parts emotion and confidence.” They’re not the only ones eagerly anticipating Nothing Special, though – while SEPTA anxiety may ring particularly true for Philadelphians, Harmony Woods’s commentary on the weighty decisions of everyday life is something we can all appreciate.
Nothing Special is out May 5 via Honest Face Records.