Photo Credit: Jackie Lee Young
Bayonne Announces Sophomore Album “Drastic Measures”, Releases New Music
Austin-based artist Bayonne, a.k.a. Roger Sellers has announced his new album Drastic Measures and unveiled the first single from the album titled “Uncertainly Deranged“
Sellers tells us “As the title suggests, it’s about uncertainty with one’s own mind, the angst of creative pressure, and self-denial. It’s basically a conversation with myself during a period of heavy touring. Stylistically, I was looking to do something a bit more upbeat. I wanted momentum and good tempo to drive it. Once the beat and instrumentation were set, the melody and lyrics came very naturally.”
Each song on Bayonne’s Drastic Measures is orchestral in texture, unfolding in countless layers and kaleidoscopic tones. With great intensity of detail, the Austin-based artist otherwise known as Roger Sellers deepens that sonic complexity by weaving in elegantly warped samples of the field recordings he’s gathered for over a decade. But in its powerful melodies and pristine arrangements, Drastic Measures ultimately bears a pure pop lucidity even in its most grandiose moments.
“This record is essentially a reflection of my life on and off the road over the last few years. “Drastic measures” refers to the huge risks and sacrifices involved with pursuing art, particularly music and touring, as a career. It sometimes feels isolating, chaotic, and unhealthy, but we still do it. I would often feel like I wasn’t keeping in touch with friends, family, and home life in general. Under this theme, the songs differ in emotional content. Some songs are about certain relationships that had been created and broken. Others are about mental or physical health, etc. There’s also some positive parts of touring as well, which is also represented in some places on the record. I’d say it is a much more thoughtful record than Primitives. It really just comes down to the balance between home life and tour life and the struggles that inevitably interweave in-between the two – The balance and polarity between two very different worlds.”
Driven by the dynamic percussion and luminous piano work signature to Bayonne’s sound, Drastic Measures takes its title from a track that embodies the album’s central theme: the instability inherent in an artist’s life, and the often-futile attempt to attain balance. With its unrelenting urgency and heavy-hearted lyrics (“Common sense should tell me that the ones I’ve sinned against say goodbye”), Drastic Measures looks at the disorienting effects of constant touring. “After a while you kind of start to lose touch with home and your friends and your family,” says Sellers. “You come back and feel like you’ve missed out on a lot, like you’re stepping into a whole different life.”
And as the album offers up many a transcendent melody and anthemic chorus, Drastic Measures also reflects the volatility of moods within that way of life. “There can be so many highs and lows in such a small amount of time,” says Sellers. “I remember my parents flying to one of my shows in Brooklyn and feeling incredibly grateful that I got to share it with them. Just weeks before that I was touring through Germany, feeling so isolated and lost. The ups and downs can be crazy if you don’t actively try to manage them.”
The crystalline production of Drastic Measures marks a departure from Primitives, Bayonne’s entirely self-produced and more loosely structured full-length debut. In shaping the immaculately composed album, Sellers partly drew inspiration from the sublime melodicism of 1960s symphonic pop. “I spent a lot more time thinking about the little subtleties than I ever had before, and putting more thought into the meaning behind the songs and the best way to get that across,” he says. “It felt like a natural progression for me—I wanted to make the music more accessible to people, including myself.”
Mixed by Beatriz Artola (Fleet Foxes, A$AP Rocky, Adele) and mastered by Josh Bonati (Mac DeMarco, !!!, Zola Jesus)—but fully produced and mostly tracked by Sellers himself—Drastic Measures also finds the multi-instrumentalist enlisting several close musician friends to instill the songs with a more kinetic energy. As Drastic Measures muses on such matters as fractured relationships and the erosion of mental health, Bayonne builds a dizzying tension between the album’s bright and dark elements.
Drastic Measures will be released via Mom+Pop Music on February 22nd – pre-order HERE.
2. Drastic Measures
6. I Know
8. Uncertainly Deranged
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