Boss Up with Bevin Your dream life is at the end of your comfort zone


New Lovers Album ‘A Friend in the World’ out Today!

Filed under: The Whole Shack Shimmies — Tags: , , , , , , — Bevin @ 3:40 pm

Lovers are a band out of Portland and they are awesome. Their new cd “A Friend in the World” was released today by Badman Recording Co. If you’re familiar with the band you can just cut to the chase because you probably already love them the link to buy the album is right here, $14.99 on cd or $8.99 mp3.

Their PR company sent me a copy to review for my blog and I know words cannot do this band justice but I will try.

Photo by Alecia Ruscin

It’s hard to describe Lovers’ sound, but I would say kind of electronica sweetness with a steady groove. What I’ve always loved so hard about them is that Carolyn Berk, the lead singer, kind of plays her emotions like an instrument. Like I go on a real emotional roller coaster with Carolyn. My collection of Lovers albums is one of my go-tos for those moments of emotional cutting when I want to just really FEEL something, you know? It’s really gorgeous to watch Carolyn perform live because she just closes her eyes and looks like she’s right back in the corner of that empty house weeping and gnashing teeth over that lost love. I mean, that’s what I imagine it to be and art that gives me such a visceral reaction and colorful imaginings.

Kerby Ferris and Emily Kingan round out the band with this amazing synth sound and the album is extremely beautifully produced. My emotions go on roller coasters along with the music, too.

Photo by Alecia Ruscin

“No more heartbreaks for awhile, ok babe. No more heartbreaks.” From Girl in the Grass. If you need to take a break from someone who keeps riding their bike over your heart this is a great song.

The lyrics of all of their songs are incredible and A Friend in the World doesn’t disappoint. Check them out here. That might sell it to you even before you listen to the album!

“Have I loved you beautifully? Have I loved you carefully, at last?”–James Baldwin and The Diagonal Trance. This track is really great if you are super into beautiful electronic melodies with a little bit of a faster tempo.

Since it helps to be all about it (If you like _____ you’ll like _______) Lovers are similarish to Mazzy Star, MEN, early Portishead, Mirah, The Blow, Camera Obscura.

It’s music for a peaceful drive on a road trip, for lying in the park with your friends, to pop on the stereo when you need to do some hand holding and processing, or if you want to do some sexing to a mellow and sweet vibe but maybe Portishead is too cliche.


You can get the new album now! If you are new to Lovers, I also suggest the album Darklight.

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Music Monday: Lovers!

Filed under: The Whole Shack Shimmies — Tags: , , , — Bevin @ 2:23 pm

I spent part of my afternoon at the coffee shop on the corner. I know the barista because she’s a musician who has toured and recorded with some of my pals and I complimented the music playing. She said “I listen to it for the bass.”

People listen to entirely different aspects of music–some are in it for the beat, some for instrumentation. I feel that music is a language and I’m always in it for good lyrics and an emotional journey. The highs, the lows, the in-betweens, I want to feel ALL the feelings in the music. Sometimes I want it to hurt so good.

You know who will give these feelings in a way that my fellow musical emotional cutters will totally appreciate? Lovers will give it to you in the hurty way–hard and with a tortured look in their eyes.

Photo from

“What a drag not to know how you are, or which of us got the raw deal. I was a dagger but in whose heart? I was the dirt beneath whose wheel?”

I’ve loved Lovers, this magical queer outfit from Portland, OR, for years. I first learned of them from a mixed mp3 dump from an old friend of music I needed to listen to during my catastrophic break-up in 2007. On it was a pre-released copy that was labeled only “Track One”, “Track Two” etc… so it was just words and private emotion. So special, but totally eclipsed by the genius of their latest release, Dark Light.

I saw Lovers live for the first time at Michfest a couple of weeks ago and have renewed my love for them from a firey and passionate place in my heart reserved for the most poetic and heart-breaking music.* You know how some music can take you on an emotional journey and relies on the instruments? The way Carolyn Berk sings you can tell she’s feeling every moment.

Some of the songs, like “Don’t You Want It”, are so heartwrenching you see Carolyn singing and it’s like she’s saying all the things you needed to say when you were broken on the kitchen floor wracked with sobs and she is sobbing right there with you.

Just watch her do it, here in this video.

Even if you never listen to a Lovers song, read the lyrics and you’ll know what I mean.

I think if you like The Blow, Rilo Kiley, The xx, Camera Obscura, you’ll definitely like Lovers. Though I like Lovers best of all of these bands, so there you go.

(There is a link from this video to this indie rock playlist that includes a free download of Barnacle.)

The new album is supreme, but if you want to dally in some of Lovers’ earlier incarnations I’ve loved the songs “Let’s Stay Lost” and “Where Are You Tonight?”

But, really, you just want to go spend $8.99 at Amazon and buy yourself Dark Light, turn off all the lights and enjoy your time with Lovers. Or if you’re in the UK prepare for their upcoming tour your way this Fall.

They are so tender and so good looking. Photo also from

*I wore a big sunhat and sunglasses to the show so no one would see when I openly cried during the show which I totally did.

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