Sara Renberg returns with Butch Spring (Antiquated Future Records), her third collection of subtle, lyrically sharp indie-pop.
“Mixtape” begins with a sighting of a former significant other through a yoga studio window; a bead of sweat trickling down this person’s face does to Renberg what a madeleine did to Proust’s Narrator, sending her into a memory spiral filled with “incredibly regular” heartbreak, unreturned mixtapes, and slyly profound observations. Over trickling guitar chords and a steady drumbeat, Renberg sings, “I used to wonder if you ever got over a feeling/Or if you just became a stranger to the person who felt it,” a line that, once you think about it for a second, will make you go, “Oh damn.” After a brief instrumental break, Renberg assumes this other person’s perspective; they see a figure standing outside the yoga studio, feel an unspecific sadness, and then return to class, humming a song (possibly contained within a long-forgotten mixtape?) from 2009. Renberg’s ability to wring depth and insight from life’s most mundane moments makes “Mixtape,” and Butch Spring as a whole, an endlessly engaging listen.