Drowse announce new album and release new single ‘Quickening’

By James Davenport

Drowse, the nom de plume of Kyle Bates, will be returning to the public eye with a second album, ‘Cold Air’. Due out March 9 via The Flenser, ‘Cold Air’ continues to exorcise the demons that sent Bates spiraling into mental turmoil years ago. Alongside the announcement Drowse have also released the first single from the forthcoming album ‘Quickening’.

“‘Quickening’ is a song about the sudden upending influence other people can have over my mental well-being,” Bates said of the song. “Someone tells me a story about death and anxiety flows through me like cold air. I instantly start ruminating over the fear that I will waste my life, that I’m living in bad faith. The song frames this struggle as a conversation.”

Drowse emerged from the ashes of Kyle Bates’ fractured mental state in 2013. With a sound that sits alongside slow burning ambience and emotional seer of bands like Mount Eerie, Grouper, Planning For Burial, and Have A Nice Life, the band has grown into complex and layered project set apart by its raw ambition.

Following a severe breakdown, Bates was prescribed a plethora of antipsychotic drugs to subdue his paranoia and suicidal ideation. Several unmedicated years later Bates’ anxiety began to resurface, and he turned to Klonopin and alcohol to blanket the intrusive thoughts. It was during this time that Bates wrote and recorded Drowse’s second full-length album, ‘Cold Air’. Marked by fanatical self-exploration and expansive detuned instrumentation, ‘Cold Air’ is the project’s first release for The Flenser.

‘Cold Air’ was painstakingly recorded over nine months in Bates’ home, a space that makes cameos throughout the album in the form of field recordings and background occurrences. Most tracks feature vocals and other layers from the band’s creative partner Maya Stoner. Influenced by the writings of Anne Carson and Karl Ove Knausgaard, ‘Cold Air’ is an album that frames big picture ideas within intimate, often shame-ridden experiences—a nose broken while blackout drunk, a seizure followed by feverish hallucinations, a father’s stroke, the death of a close friend. ‘Cold Air’ is the sound of the uncertainty beneath our lives surfacing.

Cold Air is due out on March 9 via The Flenser.

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