Mark Tomorsky and Tommy Johnsmiller, of Foundry Town Survivors, are experts in the art of short-story telling, as well as being accomplished musicians. Their latest single, ‘Hopes And Dreams’, tells the tale of unchecked human desires, and in so doing confronts a subject even more terrifying than that of their 2021 single, ‘Mississippi Rising’.
Experts in knowing just how to bait a narrative hook, develop their protagonists, and elicit sympathy, Foundry Town Survivors are also adept at knowing how to break a heart, and they are masters in the art of bringing desperate circumstances to life for their audiences. Unlike the hopelessness against the forces of nature in ‘Mississippi Rising’, the characters in ‘Hopes And Dreams’ have nobody to blame but themselves for the predicament they find themselves in. The song is a tale of ambition, frustrated hopes, fears of aging and irrelevance, and the dark twin temptations of transgression and adventure.
Musically, ‘Hopes And Dreams’ has a classic rock vibe, but it’s paired with a sound of psychedelia, as well as hints of homespun Americana. There’s a slide guitar solo that firmly anchors the song in the roots-rock tradition, and that’s even in spite of the guitars soaring the rock-god heights.
The video for ‘Hopes And Dreams’ sees frequent collaborator Paul Crowder called into action to match the drama and story-craft of the song. We are shown a stretch of desolate highway, stolen shots of characters engaged in dodgy activity, intimidations and threats, and a sudden burst into violence. Hallucinatory images, such as mirages of Las Vegas, shimmer across the desert, teasing the viewer and characters alike. Just as importantly are the things Crowder doesn’t show us, such as the motivations behind the actions of the characters, and their final destinations – not to mention the consequences of their desperate acts. We will have to wait for the next video to see if there’s any resolution to that.