Otis Infrastructure New Single ‘In A Room’

“In A Room” from Otis Infrastructure is a complex rock song, with nods to both post-punk and progressive rock. The act is a self-described “experimental rock group” that calls the New York City area home. It’s also a trio, which means every member is required to be – and is – a strong musician. The single is a fine introduction to the act.

The track stops and starts – sort of – a few times before Otis Infrastructure settles into its groove. Once it gets there, though, one can hear each instrument distinctly – bass, guitar and drums. In fact, these three players may remind you of another famous rock trio, The Police. There is an atmospheric feel to this track that brings Sting and the boys immediately to mind.

Guitarist Dean Essner is also the band’s lead vocalist. He sings this song in a relatively high vocal tone. He also sings each line with measured phrasing, cluing the listener in that what he has to say/sing is important.

Lyrically, this song is a little difficult to decipher. Is it a song about someone who is quite literally housebound? And just what is so special about this space? It’s tough to tell, exactly. It’s about one person in particular, though, and seeks to describe his/her living circumstances. “The weather inside is the same every day,” Essner sings, which suggests a kind of dull consistency. This may be describing someone that is afraid of change. Why take a chance on, possibly, nasty weather, when one can set the temperature to remain exactly the same all day long, every day? Then again, assuming this song is set in New York City, it’s easy to see why someone wants to just stay indoors. There’s plenty going on outside that many would prefer to not see at all. That room might just be a person’s truly safe space.

The listener is left with the impression Otis Infrastructure is making some sort of metaphorical statements with this song’s lyrics but is keeping the meaning close to the vest. Unlike, say, the movie Being There, where Peter Sellers’ character took literally everything literally. You don’t need to completely understand this track, though, to appreciate it. If you enjoy technically spot-on recorded music, this song will fit right into your wheelhouse. It obviously required a lot of thought and planning to make it all work in the studio. These three musicians are all on the same page, creatively, which makes the song work so well.


This is intriguing music, from an intriguing act. It’s also a bit like a puzzle. The more you listen to it, the more it foxes you and causes you to try and put it all together. You may never be able to make all the pieces fit, and Otis Infrastructure likely wants it this way. Like a mystery, where only a few clues are provided at the outset, this song sucks you into its storyline vortex, and won’t let go. It’s a song you might just want to remain in a room with, for a long, long time.

-Dan MacIntosh