Imaginary Family – “How We Have Changed”


A gorgeous sound is on display throughout “How We Have Changed,” exuding a chamber-pop appeal in its stirring string arrangements, illuminated piano work, and calmingly melodic vocals. The track is a thorough success from Imaginary Family, the moniker of Joanna Isselé, who is based in Ghent, Belgium, and originally from the French Alps.

The lyrics are impactful in their questioning of how we, and those around us, have changed since the idyllic days of childhood — now shifted into the responsibility-filled adulthood. Violin, cello, and viola add warmingly to the serene pop sound, which reminds aesthetically of the band Camera Obscura, particularly as the title-touting refrain achieves a soaring whimsy.

Isselé elaborates on the track’s creative inspiration:

“I wrote this song during my days of commuting to my full-time job on the outskirts of Brussels. As I hopped on and off trains and buses amidst the bustling crowds, I observed the sea of people in business attire. And I couldn’t help but wonder: were they always this serious or was it just a façade? Did they remember the dreams and aspirations they had when they were young? Did I? I found myself questioning whether the vibrant dreams we once held had faded into the background amidst the demands of adulthood and responsibility.”

This and other tracks featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Emerging Singles’ Spotify playlist.

The track is also featured in the genre-based, best-of Spotify compilation Emerging Indie Pop.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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