Summer Like The Season Makes a Timely Return with Premiere of “Root Mean Square” Video

Summer Like The Season – a.k.a Summer Krinsky, Scott Murphy and Liam McNitt – has a way of creating its own little world. Krinsky, who explains that texture and rhythm serve as the guiding forces of her songwriting, meticulously builds this world, brick by brick, using field recordings she’s captured on tour or in her home, layered vocals and unexpected rhythmic patterns. On latest single “Root Mean Square,” Krinsky reflects on the complexity of “remembering past relationships as a full picture instead of just highs and lows,” she says.

While the song emits bursts of longing, heartbreak and understanding, the video, premiering today via Audiofemme, is pure comedy. “The music is all pretty serious so we wanted the music videos to be a little lighter and fun,” Krinsky says. The setting for the visual takes place in an old dollhouse at Krinsky’s grandmother’s home. She was visiting one day when she was struck with inspiration. “Summer calls me up and says, ‘Get your cameras – my grandma has a dollhouse and we’re gonna use that to make a music video,’” Murphy recalls. “’Just get all the action figures you have and come on over.’” 

Murphy, a self-proclaimed “bad visual artist,” took up cinematography at the start of the pandemic and ended up shooting the entire video. While Krinsky’s vocals tell a story of loss and perception, a completely different kind of tension builds in the film. A tiny mouse family is ambushed late at night by some bad guys who came to rock. “The bad men come and they break into the mice’s house with the sole intention to jam,” says Murphy. “But their jam gets out of control and they kidnap a mouse,” adds Krinsky. The band casted, wrote and shot the film all within a day, in the type of fever dream-haze that many experienced during lockdown. “One might say it was manic,” Krinsky jokes.

Though the video was made within a matter of hours, Krinsky explains that the band’s forthcoming record, Hum, was a process three years in the making. “It was written and recorded, mixed and remixed a million times,” she says. When she finally finished the record, the pandemic happened and she felt like the timing wasn’t right to release the record; it’s finally been rescheduled for release September 3, 2021.

As frustrating as holding on to a body of work can be, Krinsky said it gave her time to reconnect with the songs and to make videos like this one. Space away from these songs that she spent countless hours on gave her a chance to return to them with a different perspective. “I was kind of worried that I’d feel really disconnected because [the album] was written so long ago and at first… I was feeling that,” Krinsky says. Because she writes and records almost all of her songs alone, bringing them to the band to arrange for live performance helps make them feel new again. Before they’re transformed into their live versions, Krinsky’s compositions are lush, intricate tracks, usually including multiple samples she’s recorded herself. 

“Root Mean Square,” in particular, includes a recording she made while unloading at a show in Duluth, Minnesota. “When we were on tour , I made it a point to take a sample in every city that we go to,” says Krinsky. “Every song has some hidden sample either from tour or like other things around Detroit or in my house or my dog.” These unique sonic textures combined with her shapeshifting vocals are what make up Summer Like The Season’s alternate universe; a place where rhythm has no rules, mice can be held hostage for a jam session, and the remnants of love lost are splayed out for all to see. 

Follow Summer Like The Season on Instagram for ongoing updates.

PLAYING DETROIT: This Summer’s Hottest Releases You Might’ve Missed

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Summer Like the Season released “Wakey” in July via PopMatters. Photo by Allen Zhang.

As we all know, it’s impossible to keep track of all the incredible music being released on a regular basis, even on a local scale. Instead of focusing on one particular release, I wanted to do a roundup of some seriously solid Detroit artists who released music in June & July. This list spans all genres and shows the deep complexity of Motown’s musical landscape.

Soviet Girls – Filled Up With Nothing EP

This local indie-rock outfit – comprised of Anna Baghina (vocals/guitar), Jonathan Franco (vocals/lead guitar), and Devin Poisson (drums) – released their first set of songs this July and it is a goddamn treat. Teetering somewhere between garage rock and the bright, smart songwriting of the ‘60s (think Beach Boys, early Jonathan Richman), Filled Up With Nothing is a collection of masterfully simple songs, encapsulating the emptiness that lost love, adulthood, and, well, just plain old life can bring, but somehow makes it sound…fun? Enjoy.

Nebr, The Tiger – “w&b”

Detroit hip-hop artist Nebr, the Tiger released an escapist anthem called “w&b,” which stands for “weed and brews.” Sure, it may not be the most cryptic song on the planet, but it’s obviously fuckwithable. Who couldn’t use some weird and a nice brew in THIS economy?

Saajtak – Hectic EP

Consistently impressive art rockers Saajtak offered up their Hectic EP, and it is nothing sort of a sonic masterpiece. Lead vocalist Alex Koi gives a transcendental performance with her ethereal vocals, bending between operatic and punk rock. The title track evokes the mood of its namesake and meditates on the tumult of undying, unhealthy love. “If You Ask” incorporates heavily syncopated beats a la the band’s drummer, Jonathan Taylor. The 7-minute opus is a gorgeous and haunting journey through a myriad of emotions.

Mango Lane – El Diablo

Superfunky indie new-wave group Mango Lane shared single “El Diablo,” a couplet of FTW tracks that will save any shitty day. Its A-Side is a catchy, meaning-fits-all song impossible not to sing along to. The B-Side, “Vacation,” has the same weightless beat with a more grounded theme – wanting to enjoy a vacation but being mentally plagued by responsibilities.

JMSN – “Talk Is Cheap”

Christian Berishaj, a.k.a. JMSN, is a rare and underappreciated jewel of Detroit’s R&B/funk scene. “Talk Is Cheap” is a clap back at all the bullshitters that waste our time – in work, love, friendship, whatever. Berishaj’s no-bullshit message could be easy to miss when delivered by his sweet-as-sugar falsetto, but sinks in deep to anyone who is truly listening.

Summer Like The Season – “Wakey”

Writer, drummer, producer, and all-around talent Summer Krinsky captures restlessness on “Wakey.” What started as a solo effort in 2014 has blossomed into a beautifully balanced quartet complete with Tasha Peace, Scott Murphy, and Sam Naples. The group makes what they coin as “indie art rock bizarro pop,” and I couldn’t describe it better myself. Treat your anxiety-ridden insomnia with “Wakey.”

Legume – Shrug LP

Shrug is a summery, light-hearted, and freaking cute record from local indie-outfit Legume. Channeling some vintage Fleet Foxes vibes, Liam McNitt joins forces with Arman Bonislawski, Paige Huguelet, and Alex Murphy to craft the windows-down sunshine record of choice.