New Paltz duo The Neighborhood Watch may share its name with a handful of current bands in the Northeast and beyond, but their intent reaches back to the early 2000s. In this glitzy time capsule, the schmaltz of bands like Franz Ferdinand and The Strokes were the kings of New York, and they reign supreme here, too. “Stay,” taken from the band’s debut LP, Okay, plays out like a rhinestone-studded game of dress-up: vocals, hoarse with yearning and height, try their best at blue-eyed soul, while the rhythm section stays firmly in the pocket, no doubt shrouded in cool wafts of cigarette smoke.
If this description is nostalgic by design, that might be due to the song’s collecting of bygone times and places. According to the band’s Joey Wright, the track is: “basically about how I always miss whatever place I’m not in, which is the unfortunate way that my brain works. It’s also just about nostalgia for earlier times in your life where you may have had different circumstances or people around that you don’t see much anymore.” Whether that earlier time is 2004 or 2014, The Neighborhood Watch definitely stands guard of the way things used to be. Stream “Stay” below ahead of Okay‘s weekend street date.
Okay will be released this Friday via the group’s Bandcamp. You can check out the tracklisting below. A physical pressing will be coming via Chatterbot Records in the near future.