Brooklyn’s coolest indie-pop duo Boyish have shared the first preview of their upcoming EP We’re all gonna die but here’s my contribution, the trippy and sonically dense ‘Howls’.
Swimming in reverb and echo, ‘Howls’ was inspired by Hayao Miyazaki‘s triumphant fantasy anime Howl’s Moving Castle. I’m not an anime fan by any stretch of the imagination, but I know quality cinema when I see it, which is why I’ve seen almost the entire filmography of Studio Ghibli, the undisputed masters of Japanese animation. As fellow appreciators of Miyazaki, Boyish condense all the wonderful whimsy and heavy emotional content of the director’s signature style into their music.
“The EP’s name came from the question of ‘what am I contributing to this world?’” the band explain in a press release. “We realised that life is very temporary but this EP is what we have to give and it will be stuck somewhere on the Internet forever. We had a lot of time for self-reflection and wrote our most honest music to date. We were so nostalgic at the time and every memory seemed to have extra weight to it, which we tried to translate into each song.”
The duo, singer Indie Shore and guitarist Claire Altendahl, said that they wanted ‘Howls’ to “feel sonically like we were in the meadow with Howl as he eats a fallen star”. If that doesn’t sound like it makes any sense, you should probably watch the movie. Howl’s Moving Castle is its own brand of strange, heady imagery, the likes of which Boyish sublimely synthesize in their own wavvy way. But both have a reassuring quality to them, valuing honesty and empathy over anything else.
Speaking of the song’s video, the band explain: “‘Howls’ was first shot over the summer in Minnesota last year. Claire was quarantining in their hometown of Eagan and India traveled their halfway through the summer to work on the new EP. During that time we decided to go to a horse ranch about 10 minutes outside of the city and film ourselves singing the track. We never fully finished the video and picked it back up after relocating permanently to Brooklyn in 2021.”
Check out the video for ‘Howls’ down below. We’re all gonna die but here’s my contribution is out now.