After what can best be described as a psychedelic life-coaching style introduction, possible one being broadcast from a basement in Haight-Ashbury in 1968, The Silverbeets get on with the job at hand. And if the job at hand is to write paisley-patterned, hippy-haze, retro-infused pop then it is a job which they are well suited to. Girlfriend sounds less like a single by a band who find inspiration in such nostalgic tones and more like a recently unearthed recording from back in the day…only somehow with up to date production values…and a video…but you get what I’m saying.
The song celebrates relationships, both the good and the bad, and reminds us that even the ones that appear to be disastrous in hindsight are generally filled with some moments of sunshine, or at the very least a few important learning curves and life lessons. Perhaps it is the disastrous ones which makes us appreciate the times when we have it good.
And musically it’s a great little sonic adventure, one that feels slinky and seductive, fun and full of musical twists and turns, running quickly from the moody and the melancholic to the ranting and raw via the melodic and occasionally the mirthsome. And just to break things up and change the dynamic even more, front man Farnz Cordeaux still has one more crack at the psychedelic life-coach thing before the song heads off to its unresolved and perhaps illogical conclusion.
Such is life. When it comes to relationships there is no right, no wrong, just shared experiences and whatever makes things work. And even when things don’t work you still might get a good song out of it. The Silverbeets in general and Girlfriend in particular being the perfect case in point.