Baby Dayliner releasing first new record in over 10 years (stream it)
Baby Dayliner has been circling the fringes of NYC since the early ’00s, with a style of music that’s part Scott Walker and part ’80s synthpop, but really with a style that is 100% his own. And if you’ve ever seen Baby Dayliner live, you probably remember it. As fan Matt Berninger of The National, who recently sang Baby Dayliner’s praises on the Surface Noise podcast, puts it:
Baby Dayliner’s live performances are as idiosyncratic as his records. Whenever I’ve seen him live he’s been alone on stage with nothing but a microphone singing to his recorded backing tracks; beats, synths, loops and layers of harmonizing backing vocals, all him. He pans these harmonies far away from each other in the stereo field creating moments when different versions of Baby Dayliner suddenly step into the room and join the party. It’s like he’s cloned himself and given them all different roles to play in his tiny personal pop opera.
And Baby Dayliner dances when he performs — minimal shuffles and struts that appear to have been strictly choreographed and rehearsed. It feels like I’ve been invited into someone’s tiny apartment just to watch them being themselves. Within minutes I feel welcome and at home. His charm and unselfconsciousness is contagious and before long my own social anxieties dissolve and I’m singing and dancing along. He’s not kidding when he says “You’ll forget about yourself.” He likes to put little call and response moments in the middle of his songs like he’s teaching rally chants to freshman cheerleaders. “You say strange. I say dreamin’. Strange. Dreamin’. Strange. Dreamin’.” At his shows people will start singing with him and answering his calls without ever having heard the songs before. I’ve never seen that happen with any other artist.
After nearly a decade in (mostly) hibernation, Baby Dayliner is back, and releases his first new record since the George W Bush administration, an EP titled You Push I’ll Go, on Friday. While the production is perhaps the most modern we’ve ever heard from him, it is unmistakably Baby Dayliner. His voice, style and charm remain untarnished. We’ve got a premiere of the whole EP and you can listen to that, and the Surface to Noise podcast, and watch the “You Push, I’ll Go” video, below.
No live dates for Baby Dayliner at the moment but he says NYC and Brooklyn shows are on the horizon.
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