- Words Notion Staff
Indie pop outfit HOAX have released a cathartic new tune, "soju".
HOAX have described themselves as “the beautiful sound of sadness” – a fitting summary of their multifaceted musical mission. Comprised of Queens-based rockers Michael Raj and Frantz Cesar, the outfit mixes together a wide array of sounds, from contemporary R&B to 60s pop stylings. Their “empathy pop” takes aim at fundamentals of the human condition and how social structures interact with it.
Refining their craft over time, HOAX have now put together a debut album that’s as complex as the emotions they aim to capture. The concept album takes a narrative approach to the exploration of tragedy, hopping through the perspectives of various characters who each embody a different aspect of the state of being – a crucial theme throughout HOAX’s music.
They have released the latest single from the album, entitled “soju”. Taking a surprisingly peppy, bouncy approach to its sound, “soju” digs deep into the tough emotions of grief in all its contradictions – where moments of happiness can emerge from the clouds of loss. The song pushes through to a hopeful conclusion where pain serves as fuel for remembrance by moving forward, a great way of summing up HOAX’s fundamental optimism.
On the track, Raj says, “2021 was one of the toughest years of my life. It’s probably just confirmation bias, but death came to me in threes. I lost my grandmother, my dog (Luna), and then my grandfather. I wanted to express the grief I felt, but through the lens of my grandfather and all the pain he endured before his time finally came. The instrumental for ‘soju’ was written back in 2019, but all the lyrics I would write for it held no weight. It was only now after this year of loss did the words come to finally give me peace with it.”