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Nearly three years after releasing their self-titled debut album, the Toronto indie-pop band Alvvays have resurfaced just in time to soundtrack your summer bummer. Like the songs on that record, “In Undertow,” the lead single from their upcoming album Antisocialites, radiates sunshine, but singer Molly Rankin is still most comfortable lurking in the shadows it casts.
“In Undertow” is a breakup song, albeit one set in the moment when the tears have started to dry out and the voice begins to calm after all the fighting and the shouting. “You made a mistake you’d like to erase,” Rankin sings, before adding, “and I understand.” Her empathy does have its limits: “There’s no turning back after what’s been said,” she declares in the chorus, as the song’s subliminal shoegaze drone sends her adrift into the fog of an uncertain future. But if “In Undertow” is shrouded in confusion and doubt, Alvvays never second-guess their core strength: anthemic, arm-swaying hooks that aim for the stars even when the sky is gray.