Just as Maryland-based Teen Suicide were becoming a verifiable Artist To Watch, they broke up. Details surrounding the decision were few and far between, though they promised to release new music in another form soon after. Less than two months later, singer/songwriter Sam Ray and bassist Alec Simke are back at it and set to release their first record with their new band, Julia Brown, this Friday, Feb. 22, under the Birdtapes imprint. The first two songs off the record are already available for streaming on Soundcloud, including “library,” which features former Teen Suicide singer/viola player Caroline White on backup vocals.
Julia Brown’s first record, To Be Close To You, is a stark transition from Teen Suicide’s I Will Be My Own Hell Because There Is A Devil Inside My Body‘s caffeinated buzz and downer slant. It’s an eight-song collection of charming pop songs about falling in love, though the production is decidedly Ray’s. Sam Ray uses lo-fi production like few others, manipulating tape hiss and warbles like additional instruments, making a deft textural element out of an aesthetic that is often attributed to inexperience.
Friday is a big day for Birdtapes, as they’re also releasing three other cassettes, including a rarities cassette from Teen Suicide and Pill Friends’ Please Murder Me For My Sins. You can catch Pill Friends lead singer/guitarist Ryan Wilson contribute back-up vocals toward the tail end of Julia Brown’s new single, “i will do this for the rest of my life,” which we are excited to premiere below.