A quartet based out of London, Bastien performed at our regular gig night back in February. Since then the band have been catching the ear, releasing their debut single, Empty House, in March and taking to stages across the capital. The fast-rising band have a string of releases lined up for the rest of 2022, culminating in a debut EP, due out in November, and today they’re premiering their latest offering, new single, Black-Eyed Dog.
Written back in 2020, Seb from the band recalls how the song, “reflects a kind of fever-dream state that I felt in the scorching first summer of lockdown”, a period of time when many of us were existing in a hazy timelessness, a moment when, “all the days were blurring into one”. The track comes not from a sense of hopelessness but from the surprisingly common experience of personal growth that came with it, “weirdly I found a semblance of inner peace during that time, despite spending a lot of those days milling about, walking in circles and not really knowing how to use my time”.
While Empty House dialled up the band’s jangling-pop qualities to bring to mind the likes of The Field Mice or The Delgados, Black-Eyed Dog is a more sedate affair, the almost jazzy guitar chords latterly adorned by flourishes of trumpet and shimmering electronics, nodding to the more contemplative ilk of Fanfarlo or Stornoway. Throughout there’s a sense of stasis, of life just looping around, “we are late for this meeting, I’m late for that day I spent, late for this healing, late for that day I didn’t get to spend”. Black-Eyed Dog is a snapshot of a moment in time we all lived through, a sense of panic giving way to boredom and eventually the freedom to re-consider the way we exist, like the pandemic that inspired it, this feels like an enforced slow-down, a moment of contemplation in a world that so often forgets to take its time.
Black-Eyed Dog is out July 29th. For more information on Bastien visit https://www.instagram.com/bastienband/.