The Abramson Singers Experience “Déjà Vu”

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If making New Year’s resolutions isn’t really your thing, you might enjoy “Déjà Vu” by the Abramson Singers, a bright spot on the Vancouver, B.C., music scene. There’s something to be said for knowing what you’re getting into — even if you’ve already gone down that wrong path.

In the band’s publicity photos, bandleader Leah Abramson is posing with a drink in her hand and a bewitching look on her face. She’s like the sly girl you want sitting next to you in school choir.

By email exchange, she answered a few questions about “Déjà Vu.” Hopefully, she hadn’t heard them before.

CMT Edge: I feel like “Déjà Vu” is a very visual song. What sort of storyline was running through your head when you wrote it?

Abramson: I want people to come up with their own stories about what happens in the song, but let’s just say it’s about not learning your lesson the first time around. When you make decisions that go against your better judgment in a relationship, you sort of already know what’s going to happen. You’ve seen it before. But that glimmer of potential is irresistible sometimes and ends up breaking your heart. There’s also a nod to Murakami’s [novel] Wind-Up Bird Chronicle in there.

There’s the mention of the “late riser” in the lyrics. What is it about that phrase that seemed right for the album’s title?

The album felt like it took forever to finish and bring into the world. We took a really long time with every step of the process. Also, our band of musicians tends to be on the late-rising side of things, so it felt right.

In particular, I like the echoing harmony on the words “déjà vu.” What do you think that arrangement brings out in the song?

I think the staggered “deja vu” harmony lines are quite integral to the song. I wrote them very early on as I was writing the rest of the sections, so they are woven in structurally and lyrically to tie all the bits of story together. The nice thing about recording is that you have the tools to create whatever elaborate vocal parts you hear in your head. In my case, I hear a lot of them!

OK, stop me if you’ve heard this one. …. Discover “Déjà Vu” by the Abramson Singers.

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