The Sound Of Drinking

Album: There Is So Much Here (2022)
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Songfacts®:

  • Six years after releasing his solo album Swallowed By The New, which chronicles the aftermath of a painful divorce, Toad The Wet Sprocket singer Glen Phillips returned with another solo effort, There Is So Much Here, which "documents a shift of perspective from dealing with loss to an appreciation of life."

    Much of the writing process occurred during the COVID-19 quarantine, which gave him plenty of peace and quiet to contemplate his existence. He told Songfacts of this tune: "'The Sound Of Drinking' is definitely about the lockdown period, and about being home for a long time for the first time in probably 28 years, trying to get used to just quiet and noticing little things."
  • Only after he completed the album did Phillips discover he was finally healing from his broken marriage. He explained: "I realized retroactively that I think the last album had been very much about grief and divorce and change, and this album I noticed is more about falling in love again and looking outside. It's like, 'Oh, I turned a corner... I didn't even know I had turned a corner, but I turned a corner.'"
  • All of the tracks on the album were inspired by a songwriting game, where Phillips had to write a new song each week based on a prompt from his friend Matt Sever, an Austin-based folk singer who performs under the name Matt the Electrician. The game was originated by another Texas musician, former Ugly Americans frontman Bob Schneider, who created weekly songwriting prompts to combat procrastination and shared them with his fellow scribes. Many of the songs on Phillips' previous album were inspired by Sever's iteration of the challenge.
  • There Is So Much Here was released a year after the Toad The Wet Sprocket album Starting Now, which featured another song inspired by one of Sever's prompts: "Transient Whales."
  • Toad The Wet Sprocket found popularity in the '90s with alternative hits like "All I Want," "Walk On The Ocean," "Fall Down," and "Something's Always Wrong." They even landed on the Friends soundtrack with "Good Intentions," but they broke up by the end of the decade to explore solo pursuits. Phillips released a handful of solo albums, starting with 2000's Abulum, while participating in occasional reunions with the band. The group officially got back together by the time they released New Constellation in 2013, but Phillips also maintains his solo career.
  • For his previous solo albums, Phillips had to keep in mind that he would be touring without a band, which influenced the songs' arrangements and production. That changed on There Is So Much Here. "I threw that out the window this time and had a ton of fun in the studio," he told Songfacts, "and it was nice enough to limit my options that way and to do something that was kind of weirder and bigger."

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