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Poolside and Brijean Release "Better When We're Close"

 and Brijean have joined forces to kick off the new year with a characteristically mellow, jazz-inflected R&B slow burn that perfectly fuses the former’s production chops and taste with the latter’s trademark percussion and lilting vocal. On Monday, January 24th, the track was released as a music NFT on the platform It was the genesis music NFT for both artists and all 77 editions sold out in under 30 seconds. “Better When We're Close” premieres today at all DSPs and streaming services; an official visualizer is streaming now via YouTube.

“Better When We’re Close” continues a remarkable run from Poolside’s visionary producer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Jeffrey Paradise. The new single marks the latest in a seemingly infinite series of original track releases, remixes, and collaborations with such diverse musicians as Billy Idol, Milky Chance & Jack Johnson, Foster The People, Purple Disco Machine, Satin Jackets, L’Imperatrice and Buscabulla, to name but a few. Last year also saw the arrival of HIGH SEASON, a celebratory companion volume to Poolside’s internationally acclaimed 2020 third album, LOW SEASON, available now at all DSPs and streaming services. Paradise is currently hard at work crafting the fourth Poolside full-length, due later this year.

“‘Better When We’re Close’ started as a jazzy idea that Casey Butler and I cooked up in my bedroom last year, and I immediately felt that it was the perfect start to a Brijean collab given their jazz backgrounds and sound,” says Paradise. “I sent it to them and they sent back something completely different that still retained the original feel, the start of a very exciting back-and-forth that involved Casey adding sax and flute, me adding vocals and production and a slow, collaborative orchestration build out. What we ended up with is a song that feels distinctly Brijean and distinctly Poolside that feels like the platonic ideal of a collaboration between us. I’m super proud of this one and hope that you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it!”

2021 also proved a breakthrough year for Brijean – a.k.a. the Oakland-based duo of Brijean Murphy and Doug Stuart. Murphy is an accomplished percussionist (as well as a longstanding membership of the Poolside live band who also plays with Toro Y Moi and U.S. Girls) and visual artist, and multi-instrumentalist Stuart has a long history in the Bay Area music scene (Dougie Stu, Bells Atlas, Meernaa, Luke Temple). Together they create a sound all their own, evoking 70s disco, 90s house, and sly pop sensibilities. A golden-hued dream pop tropicalia of dazzling beats and honeyed vocals, Brijean’s 2021 debut album, FEELINGS (Ghostly International), was met by critical applause around the world, including NPRMTV NewsAV Club, and PASTE, which declared it to be “a vibrant cauldron of funky lounge pop, bossa nova, psych, jazz and IDM” and “a striking reminder of how exciting it can be to hear such a rich blend of cultures.” An exclusive FEELINGS REMIXES EP followed, available for streaming and download HERE.

I first met Jeff for a Poolside show in Mexico in late 2017,” says Brijean. “I'd been recommended online - by someone I didn't know - to do the gig. Thinking it through as little as possible, I hopped on a plane and hoped for the best. We've been hanging and playing ever since - he's wonderful. We've toured much of the world together, dodged a brain-eating bacteria, played crusty clubs and big stages, drank a lot of wine...and now we've made a song together. In those years of touring, my partner Doug Stuart (keys, bass, production) and I found ourselves in a long-distance relationship. This song stemmed from feelings of longing and isolation when in transit, and naturally took on a new meaning within the context of the pandemic. It was lovely to collaborate, remotely, with Jeff (production, vox) and Casey (saxophone, flute); exploring this lush and vibey song together.”

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