ALBUM REVIEW: Setting Sun’s ‘The Feelings Cure’ Brings Chill Indie

Gary Levitt, the front runner and lead singer of indie band Setting Sun, unveiled his sixth studio album The Feelings Cure on May 19, 2023, produced under himself and full of his signature style of upbeat tracks and somber lyrics. Setting Sun, an aptly opposite phrase for the band’s rising popularity, is comprised of Lawrence Roper (keyboards, vocals), Jonathan Hambright (drums), and John Burdick (bass). Over the years the quartet has been praised by NPR and USA Today for poignant lyrics paired with lively, bright beats, the contrasting effect an almost mirror to the compleixities of the human experience. But on The Feelings Cure, Levitt and his crew maintian their keen sense of emotional juxtaposition with new acoustic styles and satirical commentary.


The album opens with “Cool,” an summer-esque track filled with all the glows of life. The popping acoustic and Levitt’s punch-y voice emulate the nostalgic feel the band seems to capture so well, and it bleeds into the following song where it settles as a relaxed, indie piece. “Sometimes” marks the start of the more deprecating takes on the world, and especially Levitt himself, as he grapples with the idea of change. “Sometimes feelings, they change,” Levitt sings, signifying one of the major recurring themes of loss and acceptance.

The fourth song, “Counting the Cows,” displays a new side of Setting Sun’s musical range that resurfaces in the opening notes of “Same Face.” That genre: western. Reminiscent of a dark country film “Counting the Cows” is a stark difference with it’s deep drum notes and violin twangs. “Good Die Young,” the fifth song, represents Levitt’s love for tongue-in-cheek comedic lyrics that still encompass his perspective. Now with a wife and child, Levitt looks back on his life and career in an amusing light, opening up the track by singing, “They say the good die young/But you’re old and you’re bad/And you’ll never even finish this song.”

“Same Face,” the seventh song on The Feelings Cure, incorporates the earlier, western sound only to transition to more indie-rock beats. As the band asserts that “We’re part of the same game” — the seemingly endless pursuit of the beauties of life — they staccato techno rings and switch from acoustic to electric. Yet again, “The Symphony,” the following piece, changes pace with its slow, longing-filled rendition.

“Feelings Cure” and “Once Had a While,” the final two tracks on the album, utilize intense drum pounds and electric guitar riffs to manifest rock n’ roll energies. On the former piece, Levitt sings “I found the feelings cure/I want a life less tragic,” a perfect summary of the themes of the album.

The Feelings Cure is by no means simply a chill, happy indie collection. Underneath the animated acoustic guitars and groovy string soundscapes are the experiences of a band that has managed to make every album a little bit different than their last. So, what are the feelings that cure? Simply put, they are emotions impossible to explain, but somehow transcribed into the notes of the album.