Braids announce new album Euphoric Recall, out April 28th, 2023 on Secret City Records & share their new single “Evolution”.
This week, Canadian experimental pop band Braids announce their new album Euphoric Recall, set for release on April 28th through Secret City Records. A freer and wholly anew effort, their fifth studio album finds the trio abandoning strategy, burning it down, and realizing their love record. Love, all of it; the unbound bliss, the budding impulses, and the messy imperfections, a supernova swirled up in a suite of bold, melodic, symphonic pop songs surrendered to the present. Braids also release their new single “Evolution”, a clear eyed and calm anthem that gives the record a grounded notion amidst the sprawling pace.
Of the new song, singer/guitarist Raphaelle Standell-Preston stated,
“Evolution in and of itself is a patient act. Our pursuit of the individual self, which comprises all realms of human emotion, is sweetened with the intention and act of patience from ourselves, from those that we love and those who love us.”
Last year, Braids teased the forthcoming album with “Retriever”, a luscious and meandering 9-minute journey that they called “simple in its sentiment of love and friendship, yet complex in its lush arrangement and textural experimentation.” It was picked up by Brooklyn Vegan, Under The Radar, and Stereogum who said it “builds and glides over an expansive runtime.”
The complexity of love and healing is not a new subject for Braids, but the vantage from which they see and sense it here is.
“How you cultivate your heart space is extremely important to the outcome of what you are pursuing,”
“I think that when we are operating from a place of safety and feeling loved and have intentions of loving, we can access really interesting places.”
As a lyricist, she draws generously from this heart space, often writing on the spot, in just a few takes. Lines are vivid, exhilarating, and evocative, a directness indicative of fully knowing oneself and engaging the moment. As songs emerged, the rhythms and textures became brighter and looser, brimming with life.
Written, recorded, self-produced, and mixed at Studio Toute Garnie, their Montréal studio, the music of Euphoric Recall is both unrushed and urgent, lush yet captured with in-the-room clarity. Elements weave in and out, shading a rich universe without crowding it. Austin Tufts brought a sharpened ear to sessions after producing records for Devon Welsh, Tess Roby, and others, sensing what songs needed from his drums, be it subtle balance or cathartic, jazz-inflected fills. Taylor Smith arrived from the depths of solo experiments and studio work, an ever-thorough multi-instrumentalist and sound designer with a renewed feel for fun and a move-forward mindset. Along with the album’s thematic sensuality, Standell-Preston carried the pulse of her club-minded project, Blue Hawaii, adding to their shared desire for new material to groove more viscerally.
Early into it, the group knew they wanted a guiding presence, manifested as string accompaniment. Together they arranged strings, with contributions and notations from Edwin De Goeij (who also plays the piano on several tracks), bringing the scores to an ensemble on cello, viola, and violins. The classically-trained players lit up with the freedom of the avant-garde structures; their resulting flourishes thread the album
“like a protective blanket or little hands holding the songs,”
Braids have regenerated their creative selves with every record. The Montréal trio moves intuitively, harnessing an emotional honesty and meticulous craft rooted in a willingness to let go and trust in one another; they immerse fully into the space of a full-length album. This devotion to exploring their art, together, has made for one of the more daring and fluid catalogues in contemporary experimental pop over the past decade. They see their story as a series of actions and reactions, a collective expression that swings like a pendulum between open-hearted freeness and process-driven precision.
Formed in 2007 in Alberta, Braids have solidified a decade-long reputation for their musical ingenuity and established themselves as one of Canada's most acclaimed art rock bands, garnering two Polaris Prize shortlists and winning the 2016 Juno Award for Alternative Album of the Year. With Standell-Preston's vocals as the pillar of their sound, Braids weave organic and electronic elements together amidst a lyrical landscape that is intimate, explosive, and emotionally-immersive.
They have supported or toured with artists such as Future Islands, Toro Y Moi, The Antlers, Wye Oak, Purity Ring, and Friendly Fires along with festival appearances around the world including Glastonbury, Primavera, Osheaga, Hopscotch, and SXSW. Across four full-length studio releases, their music has earned widespread critical acclaim from Pitchfork, The New York Times, among many others.