Louisville supergroup Ted Tyro premieres their angular new single, “Sunk Cost,” from their debut EP set for release this fall.
Led by self-described “non-musician” Bart Swift, Tyro began as an outlet to share his creative writing and tape-machine recordings. Swift soon realized that songwriting was the best format to share his creative energy, leading him to create Ted Tyro. The trio released their debut EP Quick Oats in 2015, recording all five tracks on Tascam 4-track endowing the project’s kinetic guitar pop with a lo-fi tinge.
After a brief stint as a bassist with fellow Louisville psych rockers Murals, Swift added Wombo guitarist Cameron Lowe and Murals’ Nick Roeder to the ranks in 2019. The new lineup has already added a more elevated element to Swift’s previous iteration, taking influence from Talking Heads and Deerhunter as group’s who straddle the line on dark pop anthems.
On “Sunk Cost,” the trio are detailing the weight we put into our relationships while Lowe’s sharp-edged notes bounce around Swift’s concise bass licks and Roeder’s simple patterns. “Working to sink into wanting / Sink my tongue, lost my time, letting it go,” Swift dejectedly murmurs, capturing the lack of reciprocating feelings he’s invested in this relationship as time slips away. While the mood is tepid, Tyro allow themselves to inject some catchy guitar movements and short harmonies to not wallow in sorrow.
“In economics, “sunk cost” refers to capital spent which cannot be recovered. The term resurfaced for me during an episode of Kai Ryssdal’s Marketplace show on NPR. I loved its visceral nature,” writes Swift in a press release. “I tried to write about it in terms of the mental and emotional capital we invest in our interpersonal relationships as well as our relationships with devices, products, systems, etc. I also had Wuthering Heights and Beauty and the Beast on my mind. I tried to mirror the tone of those kinds of romance, ones marked by great desire and great danger.”