Classic Album Review

The Summer-y Sounds of Tuesday Faust

Whimsical and sweet, the first time I heard “Paul” by Tuesday Faust, I was transported far, far away back to my elementary school field trips to the state fair and family summer vacations roaming the beach boardwalk carnival, watching the bright lights and listening to the lilting calypso themes emanating from various cash-grab rides.

“Paul” is, at its core, an unrequited love song. It’s about a strange, captivating boy who grabs her attention, but is sadly busy crying over another girl. However, Faust elevates this tale-as-old-as-time with an incredibly catchy hook, her lovely voice and perfect instrumentation. 

Before the first verse there is a stretch of wavering, circus-style music that sounds like it would be playing from the speakers of a glorious, old carousel fit with decadently painted horses. This creative decision adds not only to “Paul” as a song, but to the narrative world of “Killed The Cat.” 

The entire album feels like a coming-of-age movie or young adult novel wrapped into a wonderful twenty-eight minutes. Faust carries the listener through unique soundscapes, singing about lost loves, feeling like a loser, being alone and having terrible mentors. 

On the track “Sorry,” Faust paints a bitter break-up song. It feels like a direct response to the ending of “Paul,” where she knows he’s truly into someone else. 

“Honey / did you ever love me,” Faust sings. “Or were you just gambling?” She continues over a hazy guitar riff, “Go back to class, re-take the test / that you got an A on / because you failed me.” 

As opposed to “Paul,” this song is much angrier. It follows the natural cycles of a teenager alone in their bedroom, ruminating, writing and crossing out love letters. One can almost perfectly picture the music video for this track: Faust, twirling a phone cord, sitting on her pink duvet, watching Paul holding hands with another girl and kissing on top of the bleachers. 

“I’m just jealous,” she trills, maybe speaking to Paul. “That you have a family and you got Grace.”

Grace, who is potentially the other girl, is also the title of the next song on the album. It starts with a ringing train bell, building the atmosphere, and Faust singing, “When she walked away / the train came.” 

Dream-like and hazy, Faust’s narrator tries to reconcile her relationship with Grace, imagining all the things they had planned to do together. The song ends with her getting on the train, hoping to meet Grace again, with more train sounds punctuating the last few lines as it supposedly pulls away from the tracks. 

Clearly, Faust has imagined a rich world for her characters to interact in.

I like to think of Faust falling in love with Grace after Paul. Maybe she had to move away at the end of the school year, maybe she just ran away. With the lines “You and me would be only alone / and there’d be wine stains on our mouths,” it’s hard not to picture where Grace and Faust once talked about fantastical, romantic adventures together. 

“Bruises” is perhaps my favorite song on the project. It’s also the most melancholy, another bedroom ballad featuring Faust singing in a near whisper about her loneliness and inability to give in. 

“Nothing more to do but stare up at the ceiling now,” she says. “I′ll just take the bruises with the fruit.”

I love the imagery Faust builds in this track and her smooth, fluttery voice, referencing “rotting fruit…on the floor of my dreams” and picturing herself “peeling.”

On her bandcamp, Faust references the English band “The Sundays,” as an inspiration, and I feel a clear connection between “Killed The Cat,” and the 1997 album “Static and Silence.” Both are lovesick, meditative albums with catchy hooks and jangly guitar. 

Through “Killed The Cat,” Faust has fully captured the mood of an all-too-long summer vacation, lounging around, dreaming under the bright sun and forming fleeting connections. As you listen, let her lyrics fill in the blanks and her nostalgic sounds take you away to another time.

By Wordgirl

Between her time making playlists for future DJ sets, Wordgirl loves to watch movies and read books. You can find her hanging out with her cat, Mouse, and playing music too loud in her headphones.