June 7, 2023

This story initially appeared in the summertime 2023 subject of Different Press. Learn the quilt story right here.

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Water From Your Eyes as soon as had an excellent concept. Impressed by Blue Man Group, the indie-rock duo made up of Nate Amos and Rachel Brown spitballed a plan to forged a bunch of people that vaguely resembled them to play a collection of concert events and even go on tour. Amos and Brown? They’d keep dwelling — in all probability to rewatch their favourite episodes of It’s All the time Sunny in Philadelphia. Sadly, they scrapped it.

“Seems we all know any individual who really does that already,” Brown says, their earnest tone making it a bit unclear in the event that they’re being critical. 

In truth, it’s a bit unclear whether or not the band actually thought of their DIY lookalike scheme. The 2 of them name it essentially the most ridiculous concept for a bit that they’ve ever provide you with and by no means noticed via, however they describe it quite matter-of-fact. It wouldn’t be too far off in the event that they determined to revisit it, even for one evening; actually, no band are fairly as in on the bit like Water From Your Eyes. 

Learn extra: Draag, Hannah Jadagu, & Water From Your Eyes are the rising artists it’s good to know proper now

[Photo by Eleanor Petry]

An absurdist humorousness is ingrained within the group, who met in Chicago within the mid-2010s earlier than settling in Brooklyn and changing into DIY mainstays with their intensive experimental discography. They typically placed on self-serious, sunglasses-indoors personas onstage, however photograph opps are an opportunity to get goofy (from sporting matching Bulls jerseys to “I Love New York” tees in Occasions Sq.), and their merch has included stitching kits as a result of they needed to promote shirt buttons as a substitute of pin buttons. Not too long ago, they performed an NYC residency, which included an evening of bowling, no music. 

To be honest, bowling has turn into one in all their favourite issues to do collectively — however that itself additionally started as a bit. (“It looks as if the much less there’s to do someplace, the upper the possibilities the bowling alley is simply too packed to get into,” Amos jokes, who would know, given they frequented it on pit stops throughout their latest tour with Snail Mail.)

Whereas the members of WFYE are clearly adept at humor, they don’t make literal comedy music. Their arty indie rock is off-kilter and wonky, filled with ambiguous lyrics and tracks that waver between sounding jittery or with a pop sparkle. It does comprise some in-jokes now and again, although — just like the opener of their new album, Everybody’s Crushed (out now on Matador), is known as after their 2021 report, Construction, and an interpolation of songs off 2020’s 33:44

However on Everybody’s Crushed, it’s as if the duo actually are in search of a way of ease, and to snigger. All through the previous couple of years, they handled — and labored via — melancholy, isolation and substance misuse. And popping out of that, they crafted an formidable, surrealist report about dealing with the shitstorm that may be residing within the twenty first century and looking for hilarity to minimize the ache. 

“I feel [laughter is the] solely coping mechanism that I’ve mastered. For me, personally, it’s been actually necessary,” Brown says, noting how they arrive from a household with a darkish humorousness and the way that’s helped the ebb and movement of their melancholy. “If you end up spiraling, one of many few issues that works instantaneously is the sensation of guttural laughter. There’s nothing else that basically feels that approach.”

It will not be guttural laughter, however Everybody’s Crushed is sort of a hallucinatory blitz of dance-rock guitars and synths that primarily really feel just like the summation of the memey phrase “embrace the chaos.” That’s practically Water From Your Eyes in essence and what’s made them a percolating band-to-watch for years — now discovering an viewers past Bandcamp devotees and Brooklyn DIY areas, as they’ve signed to Matador and since toured with Interpol. 

“A giant a part of the writing course of is modifying chaos,” Amos says. “It’s creating chaos, attempting to see patterns after which modifying issues all the way down to uncovered patterns that naturally happen inside the chaos — which in all probability applies to our lives to a sure extent, too.”

Brown provides that just a few years in the past, their “slogan for the yr” actually was “embrace the chaos.” “I actually haven’t gone again! Not by alternative — my life has simply not gotten any much less chaotic. However that’s an enormous half about life: You be taught to simply accept that issues are actually chaotic, and that’s it,” they are saying.

You could possibly say that acceptance is what led them to make sarcastic art-rock about capitalism (“Purchase My Product”) and tracks that discover the load of loneliness with wordplay and jolting percussion (“Everybody’s Crushed”) on their new album. The band initially began out making what they known as “unhappy dance music” — that itself being a bit, desirous to make New Order pastiche and discovering the picture of blasé-looking folks making “pop content material” humorous. And whereas they’re removed from that now, the catharsis stays. 

Their relationship — which they equate to Brown being like a “massive brother,” regardless of being youthful —  has gotten them via. 

A lot of that closeness has felt most at dwelling watching hours of their favourite sitcoms — BoJack Horseman, It’s All the time Sunny in Philadelphia, Celebration Down and Tim and Eric being a few of their favorites. Amos falls asleep to outdated movies of Norm MacDonald, too. 

“I really feel like spending quite a lot of time being on medicine and watching Tim and Eric had a big effect on the way in which I make music and artwork on the whole,” Amos says, highlighting the comedians’ surrealist type. “It’s the way in which that they strategy comedy as a medium and the way in which that you may have a look at that and apply it to nonetheless you strategy your individual medium.” 

Brown agrees and notes how they’re additionally drawn to that positive line of exploring darkish material with humor, like BoJack or Celebration Down. Whereas it may not be so forthright, it’s all there in WFYE and their many bits. You possibly can nearly guess what number of of them have been born after bingeing a collection of Grownup Swim sketches. 

[Photo by Eleanor Petry]

“By no means in one million years would have anticipated this to occur,” Brown says of the band’s latest breakout, which has come six years after they launched their first album. “I assumed we have been going to be that native band folks discuss for years. However now we by no means even play in New York.” 

They are saying that in earnest, after which make a joke about how these days their life is simply extra so spent within the automobile greater than ever, they usually don’t have time for normal duties like laundry. Nevertheless it’s nearly as if it’s one massive bit that WFYE and their indie-pop chaos have began to take over in the way in which that it has. However once more, they’re at all times in on the bit.

Water From Your Eyes seem in Different Press’ summer season 2023 subject. Seize a replica right here or under.

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