The Birthday Letters is the London-based bedroom-folk project of songwriter Joseph Hughes, who earlier this year released his third EP We Never Talk About Paradise (We Do God). Of its three blissfully mellow tracks, the best is “Lesser Evils,” which combines the luminescence of Beach House with the plaintive cool of Zero 7. You’ll also get some Andy Partridge vibes. Hughes said that he “wanted it to sound like future surf music for the hungover,” and he nails the vibe with hazy-yet-oceanic atmospherics and dimly lit guitars swimming in shallow pools of reverb. He sings with an airy translucence — his voice seemingly fading simultaneously as he projects it outward. There’s a soft-spoken theatricality to his delivery, as he sinks into lines like “I’m going to tell you this, like I’m in love.” It’s a song built to soundtrack contemplative early-aughts indie films, or to make your own life feel like one. Listen below.
The We Never Talk About Paradise (We Do God) EP it out now. You can find it on Bandcamp.