The State Lottery - Fistfuls of Sand [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

The State Lottery

Fistfuls of Sand [7-inch] (2012)

Answer Key Records / Salinas Records

With just two songs, the State Lottery's new 7" proves an endlessly listenable property. Taking Restoration's Springsteenian sense of grit and ambiance and throwing in some of the Shins' dreamy melodies, Fistfuls of Sand is a catchy little collection.

"Fistfuls of Sand" opens the 7" with big drums, big organs and even bigger guitars. The tune is all about the impermanence of life ("You know, the past is where truth dies / We got our versions now / I just ain't sure where they collide"), which is a bummer, but over that closing, chiming guitar solo, it doesn't sound so sad. Kind of beautiful, actually.

"(I'm Gonna Find Me) Someone Else" is just as shimmering, just as powerful, just as good. It's another sad/pretty tune, rocking and dreaming in equal measures. I'm just gonna go ahead and quote the entire first verse instead of prattling on about how much I love the lyrics:

"Seems like all that you touch turns / To dirt you shovel on the grave / Of whatever that you're running from / Or whatever got away / Oh you left me like you loved me / Without question, without pause / And yeah, the winners may write history / But the losers write the songs."

C'mon! That reads like something off of Darkness on the Edge of Town. I'm not saying they sound especially like them, but for all the love we as a society have heaped on the Gaslight Anthem, there's got to be some adulation left over for the State Lottery.