The song is "Angel Gone," by Beat Happening.
Go ahead, download it and have a listen [please don't sue me, K Records].
There's something obviously sad about this song, but at the same time lighthearted, and almost funny -- a weird side-effect of Beat Happening's odd vocal sound -- which fits with the feeling I was going for with "Nova" almost perfectly. Plus, the song actually has "Angel" in the title, how cool is that? Even more than the Mountain Goats song I posted earlier, there's something about the simple, and almost monotone effect the lo-fi has in this song, that makes me think it'd be perfect to open the film with, flashing titles over shots of Huntington in the bright mid-morning, with a possible reprieve near the end over a shot of the starless sky.
Of course, much like the John Darnielle song, the odds of Kyle and I actually being able to afford a song like this for the movie is a bit of pipe dream -- but it hit me as stunningly fitting that I've been meaning to post it here for days.
Honestly there's something about this whole Olympia, Washington sound that stirs a lot of the same feelings up in me that I wanted "Nova" to stir up in others. In my mind, "Nova" existed in a simple world where something complicated happened, and even though I think the ending has wound up taking on something a little darker than I originally intended, the final scene on the roof is meant to be kind of cute and [interpretively] idealized.
Which is funny, because I've really only come into this whole twee thing since "Nova" has been finished. I knew about the genre, though not by name, but it would be hard to have missed entirely. My near-constant Kurt Cobain/Nirvana obsession meant I knew about K Records from his tattoos [hardly the same as knowing any songs], and the few covers the band did. I listened to the Vaselines in high school and college, but never enough to consider myself a real fan. The closest I might have gotten until recently was Donna Dresch -- who when reading about her I'd see the names of a lot 80s/90s twee bands, but rarely would any collaborations sound much like what they were individually known for.
A friend recommended I check out Rose Melberg -- and while reading about her it became clear that Tiger Trap and the Softies might be bands I could get interested in. A Wikipedia search later, and I started learning the terminology -- "twee" meaning "cute" in the derogatory, but taken back by the genre or, on occasion, rejected by it completely. Some of it was awful -- too New Wave for my taste [the bastard cousin of punk, as far I'm concerned], while other things were punk-based or sort of what's called "indie rock" now. Lo-fi, garage stuff, basically, and right up my alley. Through Twitter, my friend Lena hooked me up an article over on pitchfork.com which was helpful, and I was off and running, and I've been sort of up to my elbows in bands like Tulleycraft, Black Tambourine, and even the Magnetic Fields lately.
Again, with this song it's a shame it's so unlikely we could use it. By the time I'm done, I'll likely have the first ever unauthorized soundtrack/mixtape for a 25 minute film.