Listen to “Color of the Pool” by Lala Lala

For Chicago-based indie rocker Lillie West, aka Lala Lala, the self is undefinable because it’s constantly shifting, hiding itself in its multiplicities. “Color of the Pool,” the second single from the upcoming album I Want the Door to Open, sounds like an attempt to distill the self to its core. To get there, she takes a hard left from the maximalist approach of 2018’s The Lamb, pairing her sparse vocals with minimal synth signals. “I want to be the color of the pool,” West sings dryly about the only color in the world that changes so wholly with its surroundings.

If West’s delivery here sounds even less emotive than usual, it’s because she is resolved to pin down something concrete: “The moment before a crash/The sound of breaking glass,” she concludes, letting the word “glass” hang starkly in the air. And just when we thought we’d arrived at a conclusion, she pulls out the rug again: A euphoric sax bursts in (courtesy of Adam Schatz), playing one freaked-out bent note that never wants to be caught, multiplying itself back into inscrutability.