Hailing from Beirut, Interbellum is a project helmed by Lebanese singer-songwriter Karl Mattar. “The Storm” comes from his group’s third album Our House is Very Beautiful at Night which was recorded during the initial Covid-19 lockdowns throughout 2020-2021. This album came together with backing member Pascal Semerdjian recording his drum parts in Lebanon while Mattar recorded vocals and the rest at his home in Berlin.

The cheery vocals and cheekily strummed guitar in their single “The Storm” coalesce into a definite pop rock gem tinged with some some of the hardships that come along with the Very Real Global Pandemic™, but also the (ongoing) economic crisis within Lebanon still reeling from a civil war. It’s an interesting juxtaposition between a very real, very depressing topic and the sunny, jangle-pop that Interbellum conjures, but that’s part of the magic here.

Fans of Alvvays, The Shins, or even The Beatles would find lots to enjoy here. Mattar’s lyrics keep you grounded while the subtext does a good job of sharing his experiences that many of us aren’t intimately familiar with but are still very relevant in the world we live in today.

You can hear Our House is Very Beautiful at Night along with the rest of Interbellum’s prior efforts on Band Camp, Sound Cloud, or Spotify.