Choosing a good single for an album or EP release is almost an art in and of itself – you have to choose a song that will captivate a listener and get them craving for more. It should stand as a good representation of what is to come on the release, while not making the rest so predictable that it’s boring. But it has to have that certain hook – maybe like a catchy chorus that listeners feel compelled to sing along with, or lyrical subject matter that is different and stands out from the rest. I really am speculating here, because choosing a good single is an art that is lost on me, but Will DiNola, the multi-instrumentalist and comedian behind his latest solo project Sure!, seems to have figured it all out. The new single “Not the Man I Really Am” from Sure!’s upcoming album // (spoken as the Parallels LP) on Dream Cult Press is a flawless demonstration of this.
Originally from Maryland, Sure! is the latest addition to the Dream Cult Press roster. Will DiNola previously played with Golf of Mexico, Val Jester, and Short Fictions before venturing into his solo projects. Sure! originally “began as a semi-humorous outlet for mimicking the production and songwriting style of New-Wave and Pop of the 1980s” which is executed by this single and previous releases with flying colors. But this single, which is actually an updated re-release of a song of the same name, is used to further “epitomize DiNola’s transition from the silly song to the serious song.”
“Not the Man I Really Am” is for the most part a simple pop-rock song, possessing a good balance of clean, reverb dripping guitar and a catchy melody that is accompanied by DiNola’s low, reverberating baritone singing that is sure to get stuck in your head. What truly caught my attention was the great break into the solo/outro of the song @ the 2 minute, 50 second mark, and, above all, the lyrics. While it’s easy to write a simple lovey-dovey pop tune, DiNola seems to have crafted a song that has multiple layers of introspection and insight. It seems to be about a man that is caught up in a romance with someone who is infatuated with the idea of him, or what they think he is or want him to be, but it is all in contradiction with who he truly is and he somehow recognizes it. This is resonated in the lyrics of the chorus – “I was what you wanted / but not the man you needed / I was what you wanted / but not the man I really am.” It’s made me reminisce on past relationships where my significant other romanticized ideas of who they thought I was, only to end up disappointed in the long run. Unfortunately, I wasn’t smart or as mature as DiNola to recognize it, or better yet, I was romanticizing them in the same way. But as DiNola notes in the second verse, “You think by now I’d see the signs / but these days loves not easy to find.” It’s truly stunning how DiNola manages to write a song with such insight and lessons to be learned in such a simple package.
Originally, the single was set to release earlier this month, but with everything that has been going on news wise, it has been rescheduled for today. And the decision to release it today was to coincide with a donation event that will be taking place on Bandcamp – DiNola will be donating any sales made from the album to the NAACP in solidarity with the protests currently happening in America. So not only will you get and be supporting great independent music, but you can help fund a good cause.
The Parallels LP will be released June 26th. Dream Cult Press describes the album as an exploration into “feelings of transition and similarities among new situations, specifically as it relates to moving away from home for college, learning to deal with playing and touring in different bands, searching for a career path, avoiding redundancy in songwriting, and being both ironic and sincere at the same time.”
Sure! is for fans of The 1975, Owen, Fearless-era Taylor Swift, The National, You Blew It! & The Cars. To listen to “Not the Man I Really Am” and a few other tracks before its release, check Sure! out on Bandcamp and Soundcloud, and support by giving them a like on Facebook and a follow on Instagram.