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Slept On Songs: DAISY

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Welcome to “Slept On Songs.” In this column you will find recommendations of songs and artists that you have never heard of but will undoubtedly love. Whether it be music released by an unknown artist last week or underrated songs from major artists that passed under your radar, this series will make sure you have your weekly dose of fresh indie music. 

When it comes to indie music, bands often try to imitate the feeling of being unattached and free to target their largest audience: teenagers and young adults. Often this backfires, leading to weird, unrelatable songs that are too chaotic to enjoy. But DAISY attacks this setback head-on with its youthful zest and vigor. Formed in 2016, DAISY consists of five members: Daisy Hamel-Buffa on vocals, Alex Kasvikis on bass, Maxx Morando on drums, Matt Fildey on guitar and Ben Roswell Salk on keyboard. 

DAISY creates songs about experiences synonymous with youth, like heartbreaks and mistakes, and they express these feelings in the most vibrant manner possible. Even the stylistic choice of capitalizing their band name (as well as every track name) represents the energetic nature of the ensemble. 

Each song from DAISY has a unique structure. With its abrupt tempo shifts and slow breakdowns mixed with fast-paced hooks filled with guitars and horns, the band makes sure the listener is entertained and excited throughout each song. My favorite project from this band is their 2018 EP, “HAVE A SNACK.” Even though this record has just five songs, every second of its runtime is overflowing with talent, enjoyment and love. All the songs have the spirit of being performed live, especially with their hard-hitting drums drowning their high-gain guitars.

The record opens with the song “FOUR,” and you can instantly notice the powerful vocals helping the track hit the ground running. The song presents the listener with a different sonic environment every 10 seconds, expanding it to the crescendo of the emotive chorus. Even though a sudden shift in tempo should feel odd, the slow breakdown that follows the chorus is almost comforting. The jazzy bridge with a keys and guitar solo, accompanied by swinging drums, gives the listener space to take in the sonic atmosphere built by the song. Another gem in the EP is the third track, “STILL HERE,” which is comparatively orthodox in its design. However, it undermines its traditional elements with a groovy bassline, rhythmic vocals and dominant horns, creating an inviting presence for you to get lost in. Even though the vocals seem too heavenly to be true, they’re still close enough to the ground that you can sing along and fully enjoy the track. 

My favorite song on the record is the final track, “DAYDREAMING.” The first half of the song is almost like a sentimental jazz ballad. The passionate, reverb-filled vocals combined with the guitar takes the listener on an emotional journey before the song suddenly changes gears and explodes with energy. The bass guitar segues into a totally new part section, energizing the listener for what’s about to come. The second half is bursting with the liveliness you need to get up and going in the morning. 

The band’s chaotic and relatable energy brings you even closer to their music. On some tracks, the artists include studio session conversation recordings. For example, the intro to “BLANK STARES” is an argument the band members had on whether a Pop Tart is a form of ravioli or not. With this humanization, it’s like the band is composed of my goofy friends.

I am so glad I was introduced to DAISY, and I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. They first appeared on my radar after their vocalist, Hamel-Buffa, made an appearance on the track “RISE!” from Tyler the Creator’s latest album, “Call Me If You Get Lost.” With her rich and dreamy vocals, Hamel-Buffa stood out immediately. 

Altogether, DAISY is the band for you when you need a jolt; when everything around you seems dull and boring. With each song dialed up to the extreme and heartfelt lyrics about lost love, the band represents what indie music truly stands for: a bunch of youngsters giving it their all, making music about their complicated lives.

Editor’s Note: This article is a review and includes subjective opinions, thoughts and critiques.

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Aditeya Shukla '22 is a columnist for the Arts & Life section. Contact The Daily’s Arts & Life section at arts ‘at’ stanforddaily.com.