A glimmering Ring Pop of a single, “I’ll Be Back Someday” could redeem high school poetry. If that task is realistically beyond the scope of any bouncy pop song (or, you know, the abilities of mere mortals), it at least suggests there’s a value to revisiting youthful creativity with properly ripened know-how.
“I’ll Be Back Someday” is the lead single to Tegan and Sara’s forthcoming ninth studio album, Hey, I’m Just Like You, which had its genesis in a mother lode of old cassette tapes stocked with songs the duo wrote and recorded while they were still precocious teens. They decided to take a fresh pass at several of the songs, maintaining their guileless quality and joining it to a vibrant, fully developed sense of studio craft.
The album trailer features a snippet of the original version of “I’ll Be Back Someday,” all raw and clattery. It’s good, in an appealingly brash, amateurish way. The new single, however, makes a strong case for professional polish. I used to pushily proclaim my preference for songs that were drastically pared down, a viewpoint fortified by the emergence of a very strong association between going “unplugged” and artistic authenticity that emerged in the nineteen-nineties. “I’ll Be Back Someday” doesn’t exactly prove my old self wrong, but it makes a counter-argument I don’t care to refute.