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Brijean Murphy opens the doors to a captivating auditory journey in “Feelings,” her full-length Ghostly International debut in collaboration with Doug Stuart. The album kicks off with a compelling question: “Do you feel what I feel too?” The lyrics, framed by charismatic keyboard chords, infectious bass lines, and captivating bongo rhythms, extend an invitation while conveying a clear intent. Brijean’s music is an invitation to move – not just physically, but mentally and dimensionally. It’s dance music that nourishes the mind, body, and soul. “Feelings” creates a collective sanctuary for respite, self-reflection, self-care, uninhibited imagination, and boundless possibilities. The album embodies a distinctive ambience that Murphy lovingly refers to as “romancing the psyche.”
The album’s opener, “Day Dreaming,” is a dynamic celebration of new beginnings. It encapsulates the excitement of delving deeper into your own self and understanding someone, something, or somewhere new. “Wifi Beach” ventures into the realm of pure psych-pop exotica. Featuring Atwal on drums, Stuart on bass, Peppers on keys, and Bear at the engineering helm, the group’s improvisation on the track’s intro was inspired by the vision of a lavish 1970s pool party. The scene is set with a mid-frequency drum kit disco shuffle, enhanced by vibrant congas and timbale effects, while Murphy’s singing emphasizes her desires: “I want to be / Deep in love / I want to be / Say you love me too / I want to be / Honey.” The lyrics sway between “reflective moments of wants and being overwhelmed by feelings of the present,” according to Murphy. Many of the love songs in this album are dedicated to her psyche, reflecting on ways to encourage tender perspectives and make more time for the sweet moments.
While the album maintains a loose, dance-oriented motif throughout, it also explores more tranquil interludes. “Ocean” is a prime example, featuring Brijean’s soothing lyrics, reminiscent of Astrud Gilberto’s airy croon. They float gracefully above a brushed drum pattern, sparkling rhodes lines, and gentle woodblock rhythms. The opening line, “In this gentle space, we lay,” captures the essence of the track. Amidst the album’s themes of movement, songs like “Ocean” stand out by offering moments of blissful introspection. “Hey Boy” is described by Murphy as a “psychedelic guide” – an exploration of finding what feels good, even amidst sorrow, anxiety, and apathy. This philosophy underpins the entire “Feelings” album. In these ethereal and verdant soundscapes, adorned with dreamy melodies, delicate hooks, and intricate percussive elements, the music urges us to feel alive. It radiates with joyful abandon and a profound sense of self-devotion.
A1 Day Dreaming
A2 Softened Thoughts
A4 Wifi Beach
B3 Lathered In Gold
B5 Hey Boy
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