Nashville Indie-Rock Singer Songwriter Abby Nissenbaum Shares Moody New Single ‘Checkerboard Flies’

Photo Credit: Kara Nikol

Nashville-based alternative indie-rock artist Abby Nissenbaum returns with her striking new single “Checkerboard Flies”, the first track to be released from her upcoming EP Unreliable Narrator. Having trained as a classical soprano and musical theatre performer, Nissenbaum’s move into the realms of indie rock has been fruitful with features across tastemaker press with a sound which emposses elements of rock, indie and folk, comparable to the likes of Phoebe Bridgers, Snail Mail and Soccer Mommy. 


Produced by Riley Geare (Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Caroline Rose, La Luz) and mastered by Matt Qualls (Liz Brasher, Speck Joliet, Blvck Hippie), “Checkerboard Flies” is a stunning example of Nissenbaum’s work. Moody, melancholic, theatrical and beautiful with an analogue warmth and atmospheric reverbs creating a grungy yet dreamy soundscape, the track is musically rich whilst also telling a compelling story lyrically.

Nissenbaum opens the song with a muted, reverb tinted finger-picked guitar line, with her effortlessly controlled and emotive vocals soon entering. Layers of crunching guitar riffs, bass and Geare’s signature drums pull the track forwards towards the track’s explosive, euphoric chorus as Abby flexes her impressive abilities as a singer. 

Talking about the meaning behind the single, Abby explains: “Checkerboard Flies is about going back to situations or people who make you feel worthless, and when those inevitably cause harm, it can in turn feel like a confirmatory pattern that you’re worthless. In the last verse, I hint to the concept of an ‘unreliable narrator’ (the eponymous EP of which Checkerboard Flies is the first single), where we might create false narratives about ourselves in reflection of repeated engagement with destructive relationships or habits.”

As a songwriter, Nissenbaum’s lyricism often spans topics from mental health, to LGBTQ+ issues and societal commentary. This approach coupled with her unique – yet very much current – sound has seen Abby begin to make a name for herself as an exciting up and coming artist. 

“Checkerboard Flies” is released July 29th

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