Posted on June 1st, 2023

[as seen on The Alternative]

It’s been a long four years for Shady Bug. Their upcoming What’s the Use? EP, due out at the end of the month, is their answer as to where they’ve been since they dropped their Lemon Lime LP. They’ve already released the towering closer “lizard,” the band’s longest song to date, and they’re back now with the next taste of What’s the Use? in the form of opener “zero expectations.”

There’s a woozy, surfy feel to “zero expectations” that almost veers into shoegaze territory, and the rest of the EP follows suit. It’s a jittery, fitting opener and a welcome reintroduction to the band, who absolutely hasn’t missed a beat in the time they’ve been gone. In fact, What’s the Use? might be the band’s strongest effort yet, and “zero expectations” is a knockout opener.

Vocalist/guitarist Hannah Rainey notes that

“Zero Expectations” has been a motto I tell myself to help go into situations with an open mind even though I am actually very worried. The song playfully explores some of my anxieties, including climate change, capitalism, and trying to be noticed in the music industry. “I did everything I was supposed to do, crossed it all off of my list… why did no one notice this?” This lyric is poking fun at people who try to appease to the music industry, although I think I am one of those people sometimes. Society is desensitized to disasters, trash in the ocean, and weather being warmer. It’s kind of dystopian. Writing about all of this in one song may seem chaotic which is definitely the vibe of the push and pull of the Shady Bug sound.

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