If you happen to be a major fan of slightly obscure streaming shows, chances are you saw the trailer for Conversations with Friends, one of the many drama programmes currently slated to premiere online this year. This particular show will air on Hulu, and it got a major boost for its promo: it featured a new Phoebe Bridgers song in it.
Bridgers hasn’t released any new solo material since 2020’s Punisher. She’s instead stayed busy by rescheduling her ‘Reunion’ tour, actually staging a reunion with her supergroup boygenius, recording Metallica covers, and starting a radio show. That’s all well and good, but it’s time to get back to the day job, as Bridgers has officially released ‘Sidelines’, her first single in two years.
A slow-burning piano ballad featuring some Casio-like synth lines, ‘Sidelines’ is melancholy and weirdly empowering, with Bridgers expressing her lack of fear over natural disasters, fires, emotional turmoil, or potential tragedy. Instead, ‘Sidelines’ acts as a strange twist on the traditional love song, with Bridgers embracing the best and worst of life with her new love instead of staying on the titular sidelines.
‘Sidelines’ actually has more in common with a later-period Taylor Swift song than anything else. The song could easily have appeared on either Folklore or Evermore, with its warm piano chords and scattered electronic drum beats. But ‘Sidelines’ also feels like a continuation of Punisher, specifically the album’s title track that revolves around a similar arrangement.
If you were excited for the restarted cycle of brand new Bridgers music that is sure to follow the release of ‘Sidelines’, well, don’t get your hopes up. According to the song’s press release, ‘Sidelines’ will be the one and only original song that Bridgers is planning on releasing this year. It’s only April so never say never, but it’s not like Bridgers has had a problem staying busy outside of writing her own songs.
Check out the audio for ‘Sidelines’ down below.