First play of Brightr’s latest track ‘New Years’

By Mark Johnson

We’re delighted to bring you an exclusive first play of Brightr’s new single ‘New Years’, taken from his upcoming EP ‘Two Sides’, coming later this year through Penultimate Records, LockJaw records and No Reason Records.

“New Years is the saddest and most honest song I’ve written for Brightr”, explains Laurie Cottingham, the man behind the emo/acoustic brilliance of Brightr. “Without giving everything over, it’s about the painful realisation that someone you value the most in the world might actually be better off without you around. The song goes through the stages of facing up to this brutal truth, until finally coming to the conclusion that no one other than me will understand the hard choices I’ve had to make; that there are always Two Sides to the story. In regards to the video, I felt like making something relatively fun to offset the level of sad in the song; a theme that I guess I’ve always followed throughout the life of Brightr. I should’ve really filmed a “making of” this time around, as this video was a bit nuts…I based it around the artwork that Graham Clark (drawnin1985) designed for ‘Two Sides’, copying as much from the cover art as I could to make into pencil-puppets. I then made a scene for the video, which is essentially my dining room table, raised up on piles of books and covered in A4 white paper, which ended up kinda looking like a padded cell. All in all, one of my favourite videos to make.”

On the subject of his upcoming EP, Cottingham explains: “I’ve been writing ‘Two Sides’ pretty much since I completed ‘Year One’, but it’s been a lengthy work in progress. I think it took time because this is very much a purging record for me. Realising I’ve forgotten how to feel, how to actually release my emotions over the years, which is not at all healthy. I found myself in a place after ‘Year One’ where I was happy again, with everything around me, truly happy, but under the surface all of the memories and past experiences were like a virus eating away at me. I began writing, but even though I was happy with the music side of things, the words felt forced, which is something I never wanted for Brightr. I decided to just write down these painful thoughts and feelings, lay it all bare for this record and take my own advice (I often encourage people to just be themselves, especially when I play live). All in all it’s made for my saddest collection of songs to date, but a record that feels like a solution, a cure and a signal of new beginning, whilst being the end of that chapter of pain.”

Brightr has a handful of shows coming up in support of the new single; you can check out those dates, along with the fantastic video for ‘New Years’ below:

15 BRIGHTON Pipeline
16 CARDIFF Undertone
18 LONDON Old Blue Last