It seems like only yesterday that we premiered the first single from San Diego’s Diatribes. That song, “Hand Book for the Blind,” left us clamoring from more from the new band, and now they’ve delivered.
“Exile on Lisbon” is the second single off an EP the group plans to drop in the coming months. The track was recorded by band member Greg Theilmann at Bed No Breakfast Studios in North Park.
Whereas “Hand Book for the Blind” was committed to tape before Diatribes’ lineup (which includes Hills Like Elephants‘ Theilmann and Sean Davenport) was cemented, “Exile on Lisbon” marks the first time the entire band has collaborated on a recording. Perhaps as a result, the track bears more than a little sonic resemblance to Theilmann and Davenport’s synth-heavy other band.
Though the recording process may have been more collaborative, “Exile on Lisbon” remains a personal song for singer/songwriter Max Mannion. “It refers to a late night when I had to rescue a friend from under a car in the barrio where he was hiding,” she told us. “The actual lyrics broach on borderline personality disorder, alienation from family, and poetic altruistic defeatism.”
“It asks the listener to reveal themselves. And it asks to ignore. It’s up to the audience to choose if they’ll feel the song,” Mannion continued. “It’s weird and harsh and melodramatic, but sometimes these characteristics are not pretentious. They just might be what you feel and are too cool to admit.”
That’s some heavy stuff, but “Exile on Lisbon” still feels light and airy. Diatribes are currently working on the rest of their upcoming EP, which should see a release by summer. They’ll also join fellow newcomers Oh Spirit at Soda Bar on April 5. In the meantime, you can wrap your ears around “Exile on Lisbon” below.