Fotoform: We Only Have So Long

The new single We Only Have So Long is the last single and video by Fotoform, coinciding with the album's release. Horizons arrives on October 15th, 2021, and the new single is another characteristic example of the deeply sentimental side of the band's songwriting. It also pairs to a visually fine and elegant video directed by Erik Foster.

The band's own Kim House has a lot of interesting thoughts to reveal on the track's emotionality and its overall aim: "This song, to me, is a gentle reminder to hold each other close while we can – remotely or otherwise. An unfolding of the lesson we all know in our hearts but always somehow learn too late. Life is uncertain. Time is limited. Love is sometimes strongest when we are pulled from one another. We Only Have So Long is the sound of my heart breaking. The initial demo was written March 16, 2020. The pandemic was surging in a locked-down Italy (where we have friends, have toured, and where I was studying just a couple months before) and Seattle, having been “ground zero” in the US, had just announced a full shutdown of all restaurants, bars, businesses, etc. and deaths were starting to pile up. My father, who I was very close to, had just flown to Atlanta for my brother’s birthday. He had recently had a health scare, and my mind just kept going to a dark place of “what if I never see him again?” It’s still somewhat unimaginable to me that that’s what ended up happening.

"I was experiencing anxiety and a profound sense of impending loss. I didn’t know what to do with myself, so I closed myself in a room in our house and started playing with a little Roland keyboard we had recently picked up.

"I just sat there, with tears streaming down in anticipation, isolation, anxiety and sadness, staring out the window, and this song came pouring out. A distilled, pining sorrow. I made a little video clip of the song with the Eiffel Tower sparkling at night in the background and sent it to my dad. He loved it. I hadn’t finalized the words yet (that came much later) but the final lyrics are very close to the stream of consciousness that flowed out that day. Just a month after I recorded the original demo, my father had a stroke and died soon after. Geoff and I made the harrowing flight down to Atlanta to see him in the hospital, and I am forever thankful we were able to say goodbye.

"We never really planned for this song to be on the album, it was just sort of a therapeutic release, but Michael fell in love with it and laid down drums, which made it “real.” I’m so glad he did. "This was a difficult song to record in the studio, emotionally and otherwise. We kept the original keyboard tracks I had recorded on the demo in the final version, so that it is still directly tied to that day and to those (very raw) emotions. I had written and recorded the original bass part on the demo in a single take, and it was challenging and heart wrenching to go back and try to learn / capture what I’d played. It was important to me that the recorded version stayed as close as possible to the initial version I shared with my dad.

"I always hesitate to ascribe meaning to songs as I think it’s important to leave things open to interpretation. There are always multiple layers embedded that evolve and shift, based on the perspective of the listener. Even for me, the resonance of this track shifted after my dad died, and continues to evolve, even now, as my memories of that period intertwine with the present."

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