song premiere: "Mama" - Van Dale
Earlier this month, Stereogum premiered “Numbskull,” the first single from Van Dale’s forthcoming album, and today we bring you “Mama,” a single of accidental mishaps and attempts to figure it out that will forever be kept secret from Mama.
It’s a track of calamitous fuzz, with softened instructions to keep a number of things from mom. And while mom may never find out about the stranger in the basement or the fire in the dyer, the chorus, filed with sharp repetitious calls of “Mama” remind you of the childlike cries for a parent that some eventually succumb to when no on else is there. In the single’s final moments, it all comes together for a furious sendoff; a final, seemingly anguished cry for “Mama” and an impressionable burst of noise that wrap you in a parting embrace almost as tight as mom’s.
As Tim Horak of Van Dale explained to TGE about the track, “Years ago I read an article about the most stressful number of children according to mothers. In a very modern approach to everything, I didn't read the actual survey questionnaire, the full results or even the methodology. Just an article about the survey, so I don't remember much other than the answer, which was three. Not one, not two, not even four or more (which I found surprising). Three kids supposedly gets a mom to critical mass, after which her ability to stress probably just evaporates as a sort of survival technique. This struck me because I am the middle of three boys. Little did we know that our very existence was just stressing someone out. And not just anyone--our mom. I guess I blame my younger brother. According to this survey, everything was cool (or at least less stressful) before he showed up. I've never asked my mom to confirm the survey, though, mostly out of respect because she is literally deaf in one ear from carrying three screaming infants on her shoulder for years. Anyway, I guess this one is for all the moms as a way to apologize for the stress. Going forward, we're just going to keep some secrets and carry a little stress of our own. This round is on the house.”