Water From Your Eyes: “It does feel weird that people are taking notice now"

Neu Water From Your Eyes: “It does feel weird that people are taking notice now”

The Brooklyn cult duo are finally bringing their weird and warped electronica overground.

Nate Amos and Rachel Brown - the two members of Water From Your Eyes - are in California, having just played their tenth show in as many days. Friendly and engaging as they might be, the duo are visibly tired and the back of Rachel’s head is rested against a wall. “Just to be clear,” the vocalist clarifies, “the label aren’t forcing us to do all of these shows. We have the option to say no. We just don’t ‘cause we’re kinda dumb…”

The label in question is indie juggernaut Matador, who’ll be releasing the New York duo’s new album, ‘Everyone’s Crushed’, at the end of this month. Adding their own jaded chapter to the city’s dance-punk mythology, Water From Your Eyes’ debut for the label is a disorientating collage of endearing slacker pop, jarring electronica and kaleidoscopic world-building, seasoned with humour and anxiety in equal parts.

Water From Your Eyes may be a new name as far as the wider world is concerned, but Rachel and Nate have been releasing music together since 2016, regularly putting out tracks and performing in DIY spaces and venues in Brooklyn. Having already dated and broken up, weathered a period of substance abuse problems, and released several lofty concept records (2017’s ‘Feels A Lot Like’ is written from the viewpoint of a dog whose dad has died), it would appear that the duo have already crossed off many of the squares on the rock band bingo card before barely getting started.

“It does feel weird that people are taking notice now. But I think that it would feel weird regardless of whether we had already made ten albums or zero albums,” Rachel says of their recent recognition. “I don’t think we would’ve been able to do it any earlier, we were really immature.” Nate agrees: “If I was still on the same tip that I was a couple of years ago [in the midst of those substance issues], then I don’t think all of this touring would be on the cards.”

This fresh start may have sparked a gearshift in regards to their touring schedule, but both members are keen to remain present and engaged on stage regardless of how busy their diary looks. While, on record, Nate predominantly handles the compositions while Rachel heads the lyrics and vocal department, they’ve been bolstering their live set with guitar to keep this connection at the forefront. “We didn’t want to be solely an electronic project, where on live shows we essentially just play a backing track from the album while Rachel sings live vocals on top of it,” Nate explains. “Guitars give the show some fluidity and changeability.”

“We’re pretty confident with what we’re doing on the live side now,” Rachel confirms, underlining Water From Your Eyes’ readiness to move from cult circles into something more widely known. “We spent a solid amount of time playing every month in NYC; being in a scene with people who were doing weird things while we were still bad definitely helped."

Tags: Water From Your Eyes, From The Magazine, Features, Interviews, Neu

As featured in the May 2023 issue of DIY, out now.

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