Out here in Los Angeles, the trend of New Yorkers coming to live among us does not appear to be ending soon. From Ryan Adams to The National’s Matt Berninger to Karen O to Rostam, it’s become so common for distinctly New York figures to become LA staples that it doesn’t even turn the eyes of locals anymore. And on Okkervil River’s new single, frontman Will Sheff lays out the pros (“it’s 70 out”) and cons (“they’re gonna chew you up and spit you out”) for the continual exodus he undoubtedly feels as a Brooklyn resident.
The song is a warning about the West Coast, so the words tend to linger on the negative. “You think it’s bad, it’s actually worse out in LA,” Sheff states, while also noting that the song’s recipient would have to get their license back and cut down their intake. There aren’t quite as many palm trees and cheap rent references as you’d expect, and for a band that has reduced its numbers in recent years as a survival tactic, the song also reads like a love letter to the East Coast, as if there were some things that aren’t worth sacrificing no matter how hard it gets.
Listen to the track above, and look for Okkervil River’s next album, In The Rainbow Rain, due on April 27th.