Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. first showed up on our radar in the fall, when the Detroit indie pop duo made SPIN’s list of must-hear bands at CMJ, and, later, they built the buzz at SXSW. Now, the guys are gearing up to drop their debut full-length, It’s a Corporate World, on June 7 — hear “Skeletons” here.
LISTEN: Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., “Skeletons”
Much like DEJJ’s breakout EP Horse Power, “Skeletons” is a delicate gem, merging subtle instrumentation — a kick drum, nylon string guitar, some soft-beating percussion — with Josh Epstein’s graceful vocals and Daniel Zott’s melodic harmonies giving it an intimate, dreamy pop feel.
“The song is about the permanence of decisions and of indecision,” Epstein tells SPIN, bringing to mind what he coos in the chorus: “To think of all the side streets we walked past, oh / Are buried skeletons in the backyard.”
But the imagery isn’t all serious: “Sometimes I think of a skeleton in anatomy class, dancing and singing late at night when the janitor has gone home,” he says. “We’ve all got ‘skeletons’ and maybe I wish mine would dance.”
On tour, Epstein is making that wish come true: His band is recruiting a handful of concertgoers to don skeleton costumes and join them on stage to sing the song, which they’ll be performing in every town on their upcoming tour. The trek kicks off tonight at Boston’s Brighton Music Hall — anyone interested in being DEJJ’s own bone thugs should email [email protected]. See the full tour schedule here.