Phoebe Bridgers – “Garden Song”

Phoebe Bridgers will release her second album this year, but it sure doesn’t feel like her second album. Since rocketing to indie stardom with 2017’s Stranger In The Alps, the Pasadena native has launched high-profile releases with a pair of supergroups. In 2018, she teamed with Julien Baker and Lucy Dacus to release an instantly iconic EP under the name boygenius. In 2019, she and Conor Oberst teamed up for an excellent LP under the name Better Oblivion Community Center. She has become an in-demand producer and collaborator, appearing on records and on stage with the likes of Matt Berninger, Mandy Moore, Fiona Apple, Jackson Browne, Lord Huron, Mavis Staples and friends, and more. She’s practically an institution at age 25.

So anticipation is extremely high for “Garden Song,” the lead single from her second solo album. As hardcore Bridgers fans know, she’s been performing the song live for about a year, and now the studio version has emerged — her first official solo release in three years, believe it or not. It’s the sort of paralyzingly pretty folk-rock ballad that Bridgers made her name on, accented with subtly busy rhythmic action in the background that creates a sense of tension amidst the plaintive beauty. “I don’t know how, but I’m taller/ There must be something in the water,” she sings at one point. Later on: “The doctor put her hands over my liver/ She told me my resentment’s getting smaller.”

“Garden Song” has arrived with a lo-fi music video directed by Bridgers’ brother Jackson. The concept is simple: Bridgers, who doesn’t typically smoke weed, took a rip from a bong and asked her brother to surprise her with what happens next. What follows is a visit from a series of cartoonish characters portrayed by some of Bridgers’ friends and fellow singer-songwriters. Comedian Tig Notaro appears as a monk. It’s fun.

In an interview with Zane Lowe on Beats 1, Bridgers shared some background on the new song:

I was just thinking about my hometown, and I was thinking about reoccurring nightmares I have on tour. So on “Garden Song,” my tour manager sings with me. He’s 6-foot-7. He’s a Dutch man named Jeroen. I realized he had the voice of an angel when he was singing Mitski with me in the van and he was two octaves below me, and I was like, “You sound like a Dutch Matt Berninger from the National.”

Watch the “Garden Song” video below, where you can also find Bridgers’ tour dates, including stints supporting the National overseas and the 1975 in North America.

03/17 Tokyo, Japan @ Zepp DiverCity #
03/18 Tokyo, Japan @ Zepp DiverCity #
03/21 Perth, Australia @ Fremantle Arts Centre #
03/22 Perth, Australia @ Fremantle Arts Centre #
03/24 Sydney, Australia @ ICC #
03/25 Sydney, Australia @ ICC #
03/27 Brisbane, Australia @ Fortitude Music Hall #
03/28 Brisbane, Australia @ Fortitude Music Hall #
03/30 Melbourne, Australia @ Palais Theatre #
03/31 Melbourne, Australia @ Palais Theatre #
04/01 Melbourne, Australia @ Palais Theatre #
04/03 Auckland, New Zealand @ Aotea Centre #
04/04 Auckland, New Zealand @ Aotea Centre #
04/27 Houston, TX @ Cynthia Woods Pavilion%
04/29 Austin, TX @ Austin360 Amphitheater%
05/01 Atlanta, GA @ Shaky Knees Music Festival
05/02 Dallas, TX @ Dos Equis Pavilion%
05/03 El Paso, TX @ Don Haskins Center%
05/05 Glendale, AZ @ Gila River Arena%
05/07 Los Angeles, CA @ The Forum%
05/08 Irvine, CA @ FivePoint Amphitheatre%
05/11 Morrison, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheatre%
05/13 Omaha, NE @ Baxter Arena%
05/14 St. Louis, MO @ Enterprise Center%
05/16 St. Paul, MN @ Xcel Energy Center%
05/18 Milwaukee, WI @ Fiserv Forum%
05/19 Columbus, OH @ Schottenstein Center%
05/21 Toronto, ON @ Budweiser Stage%
05/23 Washington, DC @ The Anthem%
05/24 Boston, MA @ Boston Calling Music Festival
05/26 New York, NY @ Madison Square Garden%
05/29 Hanover, MD @ The Hall at Live! Casino and Hotel%
06/02 Pittsburgh, PA @ Petersen Events Center%
06/03 Cleveland, OH @ Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse%
06/05 Virginia Beach, VA @ Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater%
06/06 Charlotte, NC @ Spectrum Center%
06/08 Jacksonville, FL @ Daily’s Place%
06/09 Miami, FL @ Bayfront Park Amphitheater%
07/04 Werchter, Belgium @ Rock Werchter 2020
07/09 Madrid, Spain @ Mad Cool Festival
07/11 London, UK @ Finsbury Park
07/17 Suffolk, UK @ Latitude Festival
07/19 Chicago, IL @ Pitchfork Music Festival
07/31-08/02 Montreal, QC @ Osheaga Festival
# = supporting The National % = supporting The 1975

“Garden Song” is out now on Dead Oceans. Purchase it here.

CREDIT: Olof Grind