Brijean is an acclaimed indie pop project that features:
- Brijean Murphy, a Los Angeles-born percussionist, who can trace the origins of her music career to her childhood: Murphy’s father Patrick is a percussionist and engineer, who taught a young Brijean her first patterns on a pair of congas that she inherited from the late Trinidadian steel pan drum legend Vince Charles. As a percussionist, the younger Murphy initially made a name for herself as a highly-sought after touring musician with sstints in the touring bands of Toro Y Moi, U.S. Girls and Poolside, as well as several others.
- Doug Stuart, a jazz and pop session musician and producer, who has worked with JOVM mainstays Bells Atlas, Meerna, Luke Temple, Jay Stone and others.
Their debut EP, 2019’s WALKIE TALKIE was written and recorded in marathon sessions at their intimate home studio, during breaks in Murphy’s then-very busy touring schedule. The EP found the duo quickly establishing a unique sound that meshed Murphy’s Latin jazz and soul upbringing with Murphy’s 70s disco and 90s house-inspired production.
The duo released their acclaimed, full-length debut Feelings last year, through Ghostly International. The months surrounding the album’s release rang bittersweet with the sudden death of Murphy’s father and both of Stuart’s parents. In a haze of heartache, the duo left the Bay Area to be near family, resetting in four cities in under two years. Their to-go rig became their traveling studio and the tracks they had started writing, along with Angelo, Murphy’s 1981 Toyota Celica became their few constants.
Angelo, the duo’s latest EP was released yesterday through Ghostly International. Deriving its name from Murphy’s car, the nine-song EP features songs that the pair have written and carried with them through a two year period of profound change, heartbreaking loss and nomadic relocation. The EP finds Murphy and Stuart processing one of the most difficult periods of their lives in the only way they know how — through rhythm and movement.
Interestingly, while Feelings formed through collaborative james with friends, the Angelo sessions gave Murphy and Stuart the chance to record at their most intimate — “to get us out of our grief and into our bodies,” Murphy says. Despite being informed by a dark and somber period of heartbreak and loss, Angelo beams with positivity and creative renewal, and sees the duo exploring vibrant new moods and hues while reaching for effervescent dance tempos.
Angelo EP‘s latest single “Take A Trip” is a neon-hued, summery, dance floor friendly bop featuring a strutting disco-inspired bass line paired with crowd-noise, handclaps, whip-cracks, a horse neigh, twinkling synths, and hiccuping cuíca paired with Murphy’s ethereal cooing. “This song is an inquiry into shifting perspectives – a way to deepen our lived experience by becoming aware of the unexplored facets of our own perception,” the band explain.
Directed by Nathan Castiel, the accompanying video for “Take a Trip” takes the viewer into a Dreamcast-era video game world that features the duo traveling through the cosmos to entertain all — and defeat an evil villain through music. But the video pulls back to follow the duo in our universe playing the video game fittingly called “Take A Trip” — and then driving in Murphy’s Toyota Celica.
“For the ‘Take A Trip’ video, I was inspired by Dreamcast-era video games and wanted to create something fun and otherworldly that interplays lo-fi 3D animation with the warmth of 16mm film,” Nathan Castiel explains.