After hanging up the indie rock band In Golden Tears, Patrick Behrens has recorded a solo project from his Southern German home called Grey City – a fitting moniker for his hometown of Hamburg, Germany. Now dubbed Slowlife, Behrens’ immediately engaging lo-fi tracks bleed with a wistful sense of nostalgia for a place that we recall with fondness but we are glad we left. Recorded with acoustic guitar and keyboard, these skeletal tracks are lit internally from a glowing melodicism and Behrens’ vocals that recall Julian Casablancas fronting Beach Fossils. It’s a beautiful and affecting combination. Lo-fi slacker jams recorded with bedroom earnest sincerity.
At 5 tracks you can get the sense that Behrens is settling into his new recording set up and project. The lead single “Push & Relax” however stands apart as its most self-assured. Underneath organ-like synths, a breezy acoustic guitar and some lap-steel sounding accoutrements, “Push & Relax” is a perfect prescription for turning off for just a minute and floating into a grey afternoon normally reserved for checking a million things off your to-do list.
While seemingly low-stakes indie rock, EPs like this can be perfect reset buttons. Just long enough to pause and do nothing but stare at the ceiling and listen to these dreamy pop tunes flow through your brain. 50 % of proceeds from Grey City will be donated to skateistan – a nonprofit organization which empowers children, especially girls, through skateboarding and education in Afghanistan, Cambodia and South Africa. So why not pick this up?