Everything from Kid Runner's name to its sound (chipper, anthemic synth-pop) appears rooted in the concept of forward momentum. So it shouldn't surprise that the first single off the band's long-in-the-works new EP, Wake Up Now, is simply titled "Move."

Everything from Kid Runner’s name to its sound (chipper, anthemic synth-pop) appears rooted in the concept of forward momentum. So it shouldn’t surprise that the first single off the band’s long-in-the-works new EP, Wake Up Now, is simply titled “Move.”

“I won’t settle down,” sings Drew Lizon atop machinelike drums and an emerging galaxy of synthesizer. “I’m gone.”

“[The song] encapsulates what the whole EP is about, just being unsatisfied being stuck where you are,” said Lizon, who joined bandmate Fran Litterski (keyboard/vocals) for an early November interview at a downtown coffee shop.

“It’s less [about stagnating] and more wanting to do something bigger,” Litterski continued. “We were talking about how we all want to do [music] full-time, and ‘Move’ is about that in a way.”

“The main thing is we all want to do more,” Lizon said (throughout the interview the two traded answers as comfortably as they trade lines on the new EP). “When you’re stuck in the grind working over 40 hours a week and doing the same thing day in and out it’s kind of like, ‘Where do we go from here?’ It’s about finding something different — musically, artistically or whatever — and pushing toward that.”

Other tracks are far more nebulous, straddling the line between high-stakes interpersonal dramas (“Hey, get out of my house,” the two harmonize on the percolating “Higher”) and broader concerns that life is somehow spinning out of control. “Just got a little bit over my head,” Lizon sings on “Thinking Out Loud,” coming across like a man who’s finally started to regain some footing.

While the dual singers tend to sound burdened by their lot, uncertain of which direction life will pull them — “This new one is certainly a little darker [than our self-titled debut EP],” Litterski said — the music itself remains universally upbeat, holding the bandmates aloft even as circumstances exert a downward gravitational force.

“Not all the songs are positive, but we were definitely thinking of new beginnings,” said Litterski, who will join her bandmates for a record release show at Skully’s Music-Diner on Friday, Nov. 14.

It’s a sentiment that surfaces most clearly in “Breaking Away,” a tune about fleeing a toxic relationship and finding release in the stereo. “Getting lost inside the radio,” Litterski sings as the music swirls around her, offering a sense of comfort even as circumstances threaten to overwhelm. Expect Wake Up Now to serve a similar role for Kid Runner’s growing legion of fans.

Photo by Maddie McGarvey