First Beige pay tribute to their spiritual home of Black Bear Lodge in euphoric nu-jazz single
Despite a pandemic immediately halting the global music industry in 2020, Meanjin/Brisbane six-piece First Beige managed to have their most successful year yet. Not only did they sneak in a couple of festival spots before the pandemic truly took hold, they also performed sold out shows all over their home state, including a career-defining, sold-out show at The Tivoli. Now, in 2021, they’re set to make even bigger strides and they’re kicking things off in style with the release of some of their finest work yet.
Titled ‘BBL’, this song is their first of the year so far. It’s keeping in line with that nu-jazz, funk and electronic vibe they’ve found a home in, but has a certain edge to it that only time in the game can bring. Sounding confident, assured and totally in control, the band shine so brightly on this tight, punchy and liberating cut.
The name of the single is inspired by their spiritual home of Black Bear Lodge in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley, and immediately evokes the feeling of being on a dancefloor surrounded by your loved ones. Featuring field recordings in the lofi intro, things kick into gear with a heady bass which is undeniably commanding you to dance. Laser synths, shuffling drums and heavenly vocal harmonies courtesy of David Versace and BVs care of Myra Turner, it’s a good night out captured in just three minutes.
Versace said of the song, “I really wanted to write something with this melody that I kept hearing in my head. I had a mood in mind and wanted to combine the two to create a kind of cassette boogie vibe, something fun and playful. It started out as that first keyboard loop motif and went from there. After most of the track was down I got my girlfriend to sing a few harmonies to thicken up the mix. We then tracked drums and added in a few synthy sprinkles over at the Borg Loft where the final mix was done.
“Lyrically the song comes from a place of feeling confident in your abilities and the path you find yourself on. It has that dance party mood that brings to mind some of the best nights at our favourite club in Brisland, Black Bear Lodge. Hope you enjoy listening as much as we did making.”
Easily one of their city’s best outfits, and quickly becoming one of the country’s as well, First Beige season is upon us and we couldn’t be happier. Dive into their new track below:
Words by Emma Jones