Austrian-born, Brooklyn-based singer/songwriter Maria Neckam, aka Milán, has been a long-time AudioFemme favorite. We’re thrilled to premiere her latest artistic creation, an EP titled Time, that is a sonically beautiful creation demonstrative of Milán‘s abilities to create songs about morbid subjects that you also want to dance to, akin to post-punk masterminds such as The Cure and Siouxsie Sioux. Coming from the soul of Milán, it’s steeped in modern internal struggles and dressed up in a glorious tutu. Also the name of one of the songs and a theme throughout the EP, of the title selection, she tells AudioFemme: “It’s about the question: ‘When is the right time?” – and how to find out.”
While those questions are a burden each individual is left to carry, putting on Milán’s EP will make the contemplation all the more enjoyable. Both industrial and eclectic, the EP is perfect for brooding electronic fans. “I would like to inspire my listeners to reflect upon what they can do, in their own lives, to make their environment a better one, and what kind of choices they are making each day. A change in one person’s heart will create a ripple effect of change. I want people to become more aware of their own power,” says Milán.
The title track, “Time,” was inspired by a family member’s incurable lung disease diagnosis. About never giving up, “Now, is time, to fight my friend!” the song orders. After succeeding in raising huge sums of donations, Milán’s friend survived. Yet it also gets political. “The song ‘Time’ deals with the issue of nuclear power, and of politicians forgetting about their duty to serve the people, instead of the other way around,” she says. “Motivated by the desire for power and financial gain, decisions are made that have a life-changing impact on millions of people’s lives. As citizens of this world, I believe it is imperative that we stand up and fight such injustice, for the sake of all humanity.”
The EP’s release also accompanies a raw and riveting music video for “Split Second,” a song Milán penned for a friend lost too soon named Abbey. “I wanted to express the feeling that we are still connected, and my gratitude for having shared a piece of life with her,” she says. Even if you didn’t know Abbey, you know someone, or perhaps yourself, that grapples with the stigma-ridden cage of mental health issues. “Here in the west, we have more opportunities than ever, and a better life quality than in most places of the world, and still there is so much anxiety, loneliness and depression,” she says. “I believe that much of this comes from a lack of communication and real, meaningful connection between people. We tend to forget that we all need each other.”
We do need one another, so hit up that friend that’s been on your mind and enjoy Time together. As for her answer on when the right time is? “The conclusion I came to is that we ourselves have to create that time, the “right” time. It is the moment we make up our minds. When we decide to stand up and fight – for our own happiness (to live the life we imagine for ourselves), for justice, for a peaceful society that respects the dignity and value of each person’s life,” says Milán.
Sometimes America is late to the game. Such is the case with AARADHNA, the Adele of the South Pacific. With her new album Brown Girl, AARADHNA is set to to continue her world domination in the U.S. And with our current political and cultural landscape – we need her. She’s already dropped the single and video for the stunning “Welcome to the Jungle,” which if you read on, you’ll get a chance to experience. As the July 22 release date for Brown Girl inches closer, AudioFemme go the chance to chat with AARADHNA about race, breaking into the American music scene, and those gorgeous tattoos.
AudioFemme: So you’re already established in New Zealand and Australia. How has your experience been moving towards a US audience with your latest project?
AARADHNA: The reception with ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ is positive but at this stage it’s too soon to say – time will tell.
I read that Brown Girlis about “people trying to put you in a box” – will you elaborate?
Growing up, I’ve seen and witnessed others including myself being ‘labeled’, stereotyped, put in box for what I looked like, what color my skin was, and it’s frustrating because I know who I am as a person. The song “Brown Girl” talks about racism and the feeling of being judged, this song tells the listener that there are layers to me. It goes deeper than skin color. It’s soul – “I am more than the color of my skin, I’m a girl that likes to sing, I’m somebody that has dreams, I’m smart, I’m goofy, I’m proud of my cultural roots, I like to cook, I like to read, I love animals, I have a caring heart, I’m sensitive, I come from a big loving family, I love horror movies, all kinds of music, etc. There’s more to me than what you think see that’s what I’m saying. Don’t put me in a box, a box is restricting and limited. I don’t belong there.
Your new album is very personal. What are your inspirations for the album?
Love, heartbreak, and life in general.
How does it deviate from your earlier work?
Each album is a different stage of my life and with this album it represents how far I’ve come – my growth from a young girl to a woman.
In 2016 the world is such a bonkers place politically – both in the US and abroad. How did politics and race relations play a role in the album?
I always wanted to write a song to express how I’ve felt growing up about being labelled and as previously mentioned the song “Brown Girl” talks about racism and being judged. I’m sure that everyone at some point in their life can relate as these things happen every day.
Tell me about the video for “Welcome to the Jungle.” What were the inspirations behind it?
“Welcome to the Jungle” is about change. You have to go through it, and there is no way around it.
What artists have you been listening to these days?
I’ve been listening to a lot of Shuggie Otis, Freedom Flight always takes me to another place.
Because they’re so beautiful I have to ask – will you tell me about your tattoos?
Thank you – I got these tattoos to represent my Samoan and Indian heritage and that’s just me taking pride in my culture and me saying this is what runs in my blood. My dude Andy Tauafiafi at Taupou Tatau is the awesome artist behind these tats. I don’t go to no one else but to him; he is a great artist.
What advice would you give to a young woman trying break into the music industry?
Perseverance is key. Learn how to say no when you WANT to say no. I used to always consider the person first when it came to my craft, but through time I realized that I need to be selfish, especially when it comes to my craft, ’cause at the end of the day it’s got my name it and I’m responsible for what I put out there, and you have to be 100% happy with what you put out there. Always put you first because no one has your back better than you do.
Watch the video below for “Welcome to the Jungle.” For more AARADHNA, click here to download the title track “Brown Girl.”
Isn’t it difficult to relax? Despite summer, and implications of letting stress melt away with the seasons, we all struggle with finding contentment. Ironically, a beautiful song about just that may be exactly what you need to settle into the now. “Older,” off New England singer-songwriter Lina Tullgren‘s debut EP, Wishlist, out on Captured Tracks is about just that. “When you’re a kid, all you want to do is be old. When you’re old, all you want to do is be a kid again,” Tullgren wrote the Fader, who recently premiered the song.
The melancholy new tune “Older” perfectly captures that tragically beautiful feeling of displacement. Take a listen below.
This week’s pick for New Music Monday is SATE‘S “Feel,” off her debut album Redblack&Blue. “Feel” is a raw and swaggering slice of unfiltered rock ‘n’ roll. The brilliantly edited political and powerful music video perfectly accompanies the infectious rock track – hot enough for summer, and brilliant enough to be blasted all year round.
SATE, the Toronto-based rock star with signature mohawk and black lipstick is sure to energize and shake up the end of your workday. Her full-length album will be available this Friday, June 10. For now watch the video for “Feel” below.
London-born, Seattle-raised and now here in Brooklyn – songstress Merrily James has a brand new track titled “Another Day” off her upcoming debut EP, “Opia,” set to drop June 3.
Since in Brooklyn, Merrily has collaborated with local favorites such as Brian Kelsey (Parlour Tricks) and Zac Taylor (American Authors) and even shared a stage with industry icons such as Bobby McFerrin and Phillip Bailey (Earth, Wind, & Fire). But we’re going to talk about her here.
“Another Day” is a comfortingly catchy indie pop tune, that along with being an impeccable selection for your summer playlist, shows off more impressive vocals than we’re used to hearing from up and comers. Her talent combined with knack for writing songs, that are delicious as ear candy yet resonate with realities and truth, is sure to secure grand things to come.
Merrily’s EP release show will be held at Rockwood Music Hall Sunday, June 5 with special guest performers Ross Clark from St Lucia and Lily Cato from Parlour Tricks. See you there, and listen to “Another Day” below.
“The Modern Life” is a soundtrack-ready anthem, the shimmering synth-pop tune would work wonders as the credits roll on Girls, or your summer road trip playlist, or late night dance party, musically encompassing the pleasure and pains of millennial existence. Marks, aka, LA-based Lindsay Marcus, writes for TV and film, but with her project Marks – it’s all for her own listeners. “The Modern Life” is the title track from her debut album, which comes out June 3.
“The title track came at a point in the album where I felt like I hit my stride in production,” says Marks of the song. “By the time I got to this song, I realized I was allowing my subconscious to make a lot of the decisions with the lyrics. To me, it felt like an honest way of songwriting. While I may listen to the song now and realize it’s about something specific, it might mean something completely different to the listener and I love that.”
As your Monday descents into evening, spines uncurl from desk chairs, and you’re allowed to go where you want to be, allow Jinn Grin to ease the transition with the title track of his forthcoming EP, “The Answer.”
Jinn Grin is the solo project of Doug Stuart. Like a Hindu god or some sort of arachnid, Stuart has many (metaphorical) arms, which he make use of musically. If his name sounds familiar, it’s likely from his work playing bass for The California Honeydrops, Bells Atlas, or recent work as keyboardist for Astronauts, etc. Yet even many-armed gods and spiders need some me time, which is why Stuart took some to focus on his own vision – and in doing so gifted us with “The Answer.” Meditative yet energizing, it’s a celestial track perfect to take the office edge off and begin the passage home.
After our hiatus leading up to our makeover, AudioFemme is back – and so is New Music Monday. To celebrate our favorite column on the most hated day of the week, we have something extra lovely for you today. The debut single from Yumi Zouma is called “Keep It Close To Me,” from the band’s upcoming debut album Yoncalla out 5/27 on Cascine. Yumi Zouma consists of members Christie Simpson, Sam Perry, Charlie Ryder, and Josh Burgess.
The single is slated to put these “blog darlings” on the world map, and once you listen, you’ll understand why. A delicate, dreamy electro-pop track, “Keep It Close To Me” captures the beauty in sadness. “You never promised nothing, I always gave you something…” The song’s attitude is that of “whatever happens” and strength of self, that moment when things may not have played out as it seems, but there’s still reason to sing.
Milán is Austrian-born singer/songwriter Maria Neckam. Currently happily located in Brooklyn, “Meaning” is the first single of her sophomore EP, which will be released later this month and was produced by electronic duo Pax Humana. Inspired by the pop-rock music of the late 80’s and 90’s, “Meaning” blends delightfully dark beats with an uplifting message that inspires one to keep their head up despite immense pressure. The dichotomy of lyric and mood invoke realistic emotions of what it’s like just trying to do your thing.
Of the track, Milán wrote in an email:
“It’s about the everyday struggle to survive and “make it” in one of the fastest moving cities in the world. Surrounded by all the noise and people, and pulled in all directions by your feelings and thoughts, you realize that as long as you hold on to what your inner voice is telling you, keep your head straight and keep moving forward, you will get to where you want to go. And when you do, you’ll see that every single obstacle and challenge along the way had profound meaning and was precisely what you needed.”
Shh…the track is available for a free download for the one week via Soundcloud. Check it out below!
For this week’s New Music Monday we have the debut track from Sara Diamond. “Just Give In” is an R&B laced pop number about giving into emotion and turning anticipation into experience. The song showcases Diamond’s sultry vocals, complete with a throwback voicemail moment. The Montreal-based singer debuted the gem today on Noisey, take a listen for yourself below.
DRISKILL was birthed in Wilmington, NC by the joined forces of banjo player Ethan Driskill, and guitarist JD Williamson. The duo is climbing their way through the Wilmington music scene and out across America, just in time for the release of their first full-length album, Country Blues, slated to drop April 8 via Attic Space Records.
Even far away from the country mountains, city dwellers in Brooklyn can appreciate the nostalgic and heartfelt lyrics telling the tale of the comforting folk rock. We all feel worn down, a little beat up, and torn from time to time. Take a minute and reacquaint yourself with how lovely folk music can be by listening to “Worn” below.
A star by any names, Joanie Wolkoff, formerly performing under Her Habits, an AudioFemme Artist of the Month, is back. Wolkoff’s addictive collaboration with The Hood Internet, “Going Back” is still stuck in my head, yet her latest release, “The Homecoming” might just be the first song by any artist to start a new reign in my grey matter.
“The Homecoming” is the Canadian-turned New Yorker’s first song off her debut album, Without Shame, due out April 15. Indeed, shame is for humans, in the synth-pop artist’s transformation to surname recognition she flutters into goddess territory. On “The Homecoming,” Wolkoff’s signature vocals remain, delicate yet undoubtably lethal, like assassination via tai chi. They’re paired with glittering and hypnotic synth beats; the song and album were “inspired by symphonic 90’s euro-pop and deep house coupled with new wave motifs.” Adding spice to the cauldron, the album was engineered by the Grammy-winning Ariel Borujow and produced by Icarus Moth.
“The Homecoming” just premiered on Noisey, take a listen below.
The mysterious electro-R&B 4am released their debut track, “More,” and we’re here to share it with you on this New Music Monday. There’s little known about the male/female duo, but fans of The XX, James Blake, and Chvrches will dig the haunted, sexy cool electro beats, as staticky female vocals poke through to explain: “I need more…” The song invokes emotions surrounding that distinct mental break, hot with both sadness and the thrill of self confidence, when you finally say out loud that you need more, and decided to go out and get it.
Coming off last week, one filled with mourning for the moving on of icons from earth to constellations, we found it important to kick off this cold January Monday with something you can dance to. Labeled alt pop, but twinkling like alt disco, RYAL’s single “Jill” will audibly fill your room like a thrift shop disco ball. The song comes from the New Yorker’s upcoming EP, slated to come out February 19.
Enjoy New Music Monday with an otherworldly track from Los Angeles-based Goldensuns. The three-piece band consists of three brothers: Chase (bass/lead singer), Jantzen (guitar/vocals), and Weston Meier (drums/vocals). “I Feel This Place” is the debut track from the indie-rockers’ upcoming project, which should be out in January 2016 with a tour to follow. One can only speculate that “I Feel This Place” could have been inspired by the band’s move from Salt Lake City to LA. The song conjures up the heady (and rare) feeling of the joy experienced when you seem to inexplicably land right where you should be.
This Monday, as Thanksgiving travel plans peak over the horizon, there is an energy of paused excitement. Today’s vibe is a little weird. To honor that, we’re going to share with you something a little weird for New Music Monday. We have the debut track “Sgoraet” from Russian artist Kedr Livanskiy. Kedr Livanskiy is Russian for Lebanese Cedar. The lo-fi synth-y ” “Sgoraet” (Russian for “Burning Down”) is equal parts scary and romantic, but not scary and romantic like a Tinder date held in a botanical garden, but scary and romantic like an old Italian horror film about doomed ballerinas.
It’s Monday, and I don’t feel good. I’m cranky. My birthday was the weekend and I feel a year older and none the wiser. Riffing on my angsty vibes, yet pulling me out of my I-don’t-wanna-work lethargy, is Nashville’s The By Gods with their first single “On the Radio.” A trio made up of George Pauley (vocals, guitar), Natalie Pauley (bass), and Tye Hammonds (drums), the “no frills” rockers give it to you straight with a 90’s-alt attitude and just the right amount of ass kicking so you might actually accomplish something today.
Listen to “On the Radio” below and shake off your moody blues. Their upcoming album Get On Feelings will be out January 22nd.
Emi Meyer‘s debut album, Curious Creature came out in 2009 and reached #1 on Japan’s iTunes Jazz Charts, and lead her to be crowned as iTunes Japan’s Best New Artist. Now America has caught up to speed, and AudioFemme is here to premiere her new track, “Galaxy’s Skirt (Soul Catalyst Remix).” It’s jazz, but with the most delightful tropical pop twist which makes it the best song to dance to, alone out of happiness or out with a lover, that we’ve heard in some time. Emi comes from an interesting background full of accolades. Born in Kyoto to a Japanese mother and American father, she moved to Seattle as a child, and went on to win the 2007 Seattle-Kobe Jazz vocalist competition. Now, she’s kicking ass with her music being featured on the likes of MTV’s “Awkward.”
Her upcoming album Galaxy’s Skirt: Deluxe Edition is out December 4. You can catch her before then playing New York’s Club Bonafide Friday, November 13.
Upgrade your work day with the dance-infused jazz track below.
With the turn of winter and the fall of snow, everything is encased to appear more magical, more romantic. As the seasons change we’re here to kick of your week with the premiere of singer/songwriter Kimberly Wyma‘s video for “Hit and Run” from her EP “Escapistry.” It was filmed in the now New York City-based artist’s hometown of Grand Rapids, Michigan, the day after “a huge, magical blizzard.” We see Wyma running through a Narnia-like white forest and playing her heart out on a piano in an abandoned and graffiti-splattered building. The contradiction of the romance and brokedown palace quality of the video are both ethereal, always raw – much like the truth in the lyrics of a romance gone awry.
Los Angeles-based Gregory Uhlmann of Fell Runner has released his first single under his own name, and it is divine. With a Bon Iver lullaby quality, “It’s Not Your Fault” is the perfect love song for the romantic skeptic. Too many love songs seem to be written in that first month dopamine-high of a new relationship, where you’re waking up in strange farmhouses feeling lucky to have found the person you’ve been dreaming of all your life and giving each other life-changing oral sex. That part’s awesome but easy. The hard part is sustaining beauty once you’ve smelled each other’s bad body odor and figured out what you find annoying. Chemical come downs, shitty cigarettes, and frozen over lakes – “It’s Not Your Fault” is the dreamy yet honest love song you’ve been missing.
It’s a grey Thursday, but something new is shining through the clouds. The femmes are here to premiere Brooklyn-based singer/songwriter Sam Geller, known as Samson The Truest‘s new video for “Afterall” the day before his new album Come Back Shane is released. The video opens with a dichotomy of a grainy image of a bee emerging from a flower contrasting Samson‘s forthright vocals that calmly tell a tale of raging jealousy. With his long hair and relaxed Jesus sex appeal, we watch him linger in the park with a lady friend (Aerial East, who also contributes vocals to the song). Xan Aird joins them sonically on guitar. It’s shot like a family video, spliced with footage of waterfalls, delightfully freaky performers, and spooky drifting balloons. The video feels like a fragmented dream, waking up in a haze of memories and emotions.
To celebrate, join Samson at his album release show this Sunday night, October 4th at Against Nature at 159 Chrystie St in the Lower East Side. It’s also a lovely suit shop. See you then and watch “Afterall” below.
While most of New York fled the city for Labor Day 2015, Wolkoff, aka Joanie Wolkoff formerly of Her Habits, performed at the venue famous for those lights, Baby’s All Right. She covered the entirety of her EP “Talismans” and finished with a few new tunes. She started the show covered in a cape – removed to reveal a shiny jaw-dropping black mini-dress, a look completed with her signature white Reeboks and tube socks. She was joined by two talented and flexible modern dancers, complementing Wolkoff’s moody pop with sweat on muscles and even a samarai sword. Her EP “Talismans,” which you can stream here, shows Wolkoff’s lyrical emotional depth and alt-pop writing chops, but seeing her live truly takes the experience to the next level. Sure, she’s blonde and pretty – but far from appearing traditional or boring. Joanie Wolkoff is just one of those goddesses who is on to something and found a way to exist in this world that is wholly unique to herself, yet captivating to all. Those attributes shine through in her stage presence, performance, aesthetic and of course, music, to create quite the enchanting package.
If you missed this show, come see Wolkoff at Atypical Beasts and AudoFemme’s CMJ takeover show Friday, October 16th at The Delancey. Until then, watch Wolkoff’s video for “Too Quiet” below:
Coming from Seattle, Hibou is Peter Michel. The debut album will be released September 18, but for this #newmusicMonday we’re sharing one of our favorite tracks – “In The Sun.” It’s a heady song evocative of happiness, that mysterious emotion evading any music lover who relates to High Fidelity – yet holds the cheese. Hazy guitars and nostalgic vocals create a perfumey track for anyone who has had to Google the symptoms of a smile to figure out what’s going on.
Jesse R. Berlin is a mysterious man. A lovely and talented one, but a tough cookie to crack. His debut album Glitter Lung is a sonic adventure of disco and glam rock, rumored to have been created while he was holed up in a studio embracing insomnia. Not only do we have the premiere of his music video for “Wash Your Boat!” but also a bizarre interview for you to enjoy. The video features a well-placed banana and appears to have been influenced by silent films, nature documentaries, and early 80s gangster films, if said gangsters were into karaoke. Before you watch it, enjoy an interview between Jesse R. Berlin and AudioFemme’s Managing Editor, about his dream woman, the feminist bookstore from Portlandia, and the importance of listening to an entire record.
Sophie Saint Thomas: So what do you do when you can’t sleep?
Jesse R. Berlin: Uh…I don’t sleep? There’s actually one thing that works pretty consistently and it’s so specific and weird. But so Hulu Plus, they have the Criterion Collection, or most of it, streaming. And you know who Ozu is, Yasujirō Ozu? He was a Japanese filmmaker for the 30s, 40s, 50s, early 60s. And his movies are…like the most slow-moving, glacial, kind of plotless but gorgeous and moving things. He made like 80 movies, and they all have the same plot. The plot is about an old father figure set in his ways dealing with a young child who wants to live with the kids! So you don’t have to really pay attention. So I watch one of his things with the sound off and inevitably it works at some point.
ST: I was reading your bio and from what I can tell at least the insomnia part is real! Tell me about making the album Glitter Lung. Did it take three years? Were you sleeping?
JB: Yeah, yeah, that’s all true, and I wasn’t sleeping.
ST: Your process reminded me of a certain David Bowie era where he wasn’t sleeping much while recording…
JB: Well there’s the famous thing where he was making Station to Station right? And he was in like Beverly Hills. And he was just like living off of cocaine and milk. The great quote is something like “I know we made it in LA because that’s what it says on the cover.”
ST: Do you relate to that at all?
JB: I can, [fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][although] I was consuming a lot more than milk.
ST: I heard you consume Gatorade and Milk.
JB: Well, that was like a one off thing. I’m not really big on Gatorade in general.
ST: What do you like to drink?
JB: Depends on the time of the day. I like coffee. I like a cocktail that seems like it required a lot of effort to make. Like an Old Fashioned, or a Whiskey Sour, that kind of thing.
ST: So a whiskey drinker?
JB: Yeah whiskey is pretty good. Not much of a beer drinker.
ST: I don’t drink booze anymore because it make me an asshole. I just smoke.
JB: See, that’s exactly the opposite for me. That’s so interesting. It’s really interesting how different people’s brains react to things. I can’t really do weed. I was just at the West Coast on tour, and there was like one person at every show that was like “Hey, you want to come get high?” and I think it was off-putting. I think I lost fans by saying that.
ST: Oh yeah, maybe. I feel like I’ve lost friends by not drinking anymore. So on your tour, what did you think of Portland?
JB: Portland? It was the worst show of the tour. By a pretty wide margin. I had a heckler that I had to deal with.
ST: I thought people in Portland were supposed to be nice.
JB: Yeah! I know, right. Some asshole. But the food was great, and I did try the coffee. The coffee was phenomenal. But it’s not as mythical as Portlandia will have you believe. The show was actually right next door to the feminist book store from Portlandia.
ST: I did not know that was a real place!
JB: Yeah! I tweeted something about it, not using their name just like the phrase “feminist bookstore from Portlandia.” And they found me and Tweeted back to me and were like, “Welcome! Feminism is for everybody.”
ST: That’s unbelievable. So I wanted to ask, is it true you have a wife named Misty?
JB: Yes. Well, ex-wife.
ST: Ex-wife? Have you thought about telling everyone she’s your sister? Do the brother/sister duo?
JB: Isn’t that kind of played?
ST: Yeah. So what is your dream woman like?
JB: Oh god. I try not to actually engage with that thought process. I think you sort of just got to take people as they are. It’s just about whether or not it works, right? It’s not about some kind of standard. If it’s too much about standards then nothing’s going to work out. And not just [romantically] but with anything you do.
ST: So about Glitter Lung. I played the single “How DidYouSleepLadyKite” to a friend, who said he didn’t get it. Then he listened to the whole album, and went “Okay now I get it.” What do you think of that? Is the album meant to be heard as a cohesive experience?
JB: I think that is correct. Online singles culture, I don’t like it. You have to participate in it. Well, I guess you you don’t have to, but it’s beneficial to participate in it. But you know, it’s like… did you see that movie American Ultra?
JB: Do you know about it? As a pot smoker you would love it. It’s like Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart and they’re pot heads, and the government is after them. So the advertising campaign for this movie made it seem like it was going to be Pineapple Express, which I loved, and that was kind of what I was going to see it for. It wasn’t at all – it was like True Romance.
ST: Really? I love True Romance.
JB: Of course you do, that movie is amazing. And this movie was really good too. But you would never know that unless you saw the whole thing. And even like the first few scenes are like of a totally different tone. It sort of starts going in one direction and then pivots and gets super interesting. And I feel like listening to one song out of the context of a whole thing is just like seeing the ad campaign or like the first scene of a movie. Hopefully it’s enough to entice you, but it’s not going to make – at least for a record that’s like, a record, it’s not going to make a full thing, which is what I was trying to do. You have to do the whole thing. And that one song especially…how do I put it…that’s like the most Ween-like thing on the record. You know, but it’s not like a comedy record. It’s good as a single, but [my music] is about the whole thing. So I totally get how it worked for that guy.
ST: What is a Glitter Lung?
JB: It’s a fake disease that elementary school teachers and drag queens both joke about getting, where you inhale so much glitter that is slices up your lungs from the inside. And it kills you. I think it came to prominence as an Onion article.
ST: I love it. I hear your live shows are interesting.
JB: Yeah, they are interesting. What am I going for…Well, I’ve been doing this for a while, right? This is not my first rodeo. I think there’s something about playing in bands or doing singer/songwriting things where you know if you’re out there doing it, you play on all these bills with all these other people who sound pretty much exactly the same way you sound. There’s really nothing all that special or interesting about any of them, or about you, except that you know it’s varying degrees of quality. So I got fed up with that. I wanted to see if there was something I could do that nobody else could do. Whether or not it’s good, and I think it is very good – by virtue of being different. Because ultimately the thing that makes it work good for anybody is that little kernel of you. The person that shines through, right? So it was just about shaving away all the parts that weren’t that. So that it just could be that. But then you also need to protect yourself in some way. So a lot of people protect themselves by playing guitar, or looking at their pedals, or something like that. And it’s not very fun to watch. It’s very boring to watch. So I don’t play any instruments on stage. I exist as myself and I think that’s what comes across. There are scripted moments, or canned moments, which are the same sort of protection, but I think a lot more engaging.
JB: I mean I don’t want to spoil too much of it. Unlike many musical performances I would say it’s a character driven performance. There is a lot of character building and world building involved in that performance. I have pre-recorded stage banter.
JB: Yes, that is the correct response to that. My ex-wife is in the show and Josh, my personal assistant is also in the show. They’re supportive presences. Not nessesarily like emotionally supportive, but just structurally supportive. There’a a surprise cover. I like to think of myself as a student of the masters, so I spend a lot of time watching Elvis performances, Prince performances. I hope that I’m not engaging in mimicry, as much as I am part of a lineage.