Mt. Joy – “Rearrange Us”
Written by Lindsey Hardison on January 25, 2021
Mt. Joy is an alternative-folk band that originated in Philadelphia. They came out with their sophomore album, Rearrange Us, in early June of 2020. They’ve been releasing singles off the album since October of 2019, but it was a whole different experience listening to the complete album from start to finish. This album delves into a variety of themes, the most prominent ones being love and mental health.
The album begins with my personal favorite, “Bug Eyes.” The overall theme is his lover leaving him, but he knows he will be okay just as long as he keeps moving forward. Roughly the first two minutes are slow and melancholy, feeling like it will take on more of a ballad feel. The song then picks up and the drums come in, having the whole mood shift. A lyric that instantly shot out to me was, “Hold on tight/ I think I might’ve wasted all my time on fear.” Lead singer Matt Quinn really pushes his vocals near the end of the song, allowing the listener to feel the intensity of what he is experiencing. Even though this song has only been out for five months, it has already become my fourth most listened to song of all time on my Spotify- so it’s safe to say I love it.
“Rearrange Us” was the first single to be released from the album. It has a more soul vibe to it than the others, which I really enjoy. It talks about how in the grand scheme of things, the life we’re living is very short, but it can feel like forever when we ruminate on what has happened to us. “Every Holiday” is definitely one of the slower, more upfront sad songs with piano and trumpets dispersed throughout. It talks about how during the holidays, the narrator feels this depression overcome them. It touches on one’s struggle with mental health, and the narrator’s partner seems to be trying to comfort them.
“Witness” simply just hurts my feelings. It is so hard for me to describe this song other than the feeling of being punched in the gut. The general theme of the song is about love and mental illness. It explores how this darkness overcomes the narrator and makes him lash out, but at the end of the day, he still has love for a woman who was a light to him. The end of the song alludes to how this love is all he wants and he’s ready to put the effort into it again. It builds up around the two-minute mark and becomes a very intense back and forth of angry and delicate, as if the narrator is fighting with his mind. It ends with the simple line “I’m ready to love,” really just kicking you while you’re down.
“Become” is one of the shorter songs on the album, but still beautiful. It begins with a simple guitar and goes into wanting to spend their life with someone in this crazy life. What I personally love most about this song is the way it seamlessly flows into the final track, “Strangers.” Again, this song simply hurts. Personally, I think the piano in this is what makes the song so great. The lyrics showcase the sadness of having to fall in love with strangers and getting over this person who they once loved extremely well. It plays into the title of the album on how they didn’t want their love to go away, but it simply rearranged them. Even though the narrator didn’t want the love to be over, they know they will be alright in the end.
If it is not obvious, I think everyone should absolutely listen to this album in order from start to finish. The last four songs on the album create the sentence, “witness us become strangers,” and it’s just so good. The lyrics and themes throughout are all done immaculately, and I am not ashamed to say this album has made me cry multiple times.
Favorites: “Bug Eyes,” “Witness,” “Strangers,” and “Acrobats.”