Nearly four years have gone by since Sad Fish released the Take the Bait cassette EP (Godless America) in November of 2017. Much has changed since then.
With their latest single, titled “Deusa,” Sad Fish awakens from its long slumber wielding a more considered Brazilian pop sound, crafted by a new lineup that eschews the eccentricities of the group’s beginnings.
What began as singer, guitar and keyboard player, and main songwriter Arthur Cabral’s project has become a full band, as drummer, percussionist and engineer Lyle Baldes, and bass player Gracie Joo have settled in alongside Cabral and long standing drummer Emma Rubenstein. With the passage of time, and developing chemistry with a dedicated bass player and second percussionist, Sad Fish has learned how to articulate what the group’s previous concoctions of lo-fi Tropicália and psychedelic pop only hinted at—albeit sung entirely in Portuguese.
Cabral hails from Goiânia, Brazil. His innate musical inflections are an indelible part of Sad Fish’s sound, vision, and personality. Experimental time signatures, though, and a genuinely peculiar sense of humor have long been a part of the group’s identity as well. With “Deusa,” these elements are still there, but they’re employed with subtlety as the group remains focused on drawing out rhythms, melody, and a more sophisticated musical experience (a la Sue Jorge, Caetano Veloso, and Os Mutantes).
The video, directed by Bill Guzik, and starring Eliana Heiser, Bishop Harry, and Pete Though, brings the group’s surreal and cinematic inclinations to life with a noirish tale of trickery and human sacrifice.
“Deusa” is the first single from an as yet untitled album that’s due out this Fall—Sad Fish’s first proper full-length.
Sad Fish is playing a live-streaming set of unreleased songs from the new album at Casa Nova on Monday, April 19. Tune in via Facebook, and keep your eyes peeled for more details coming soon.
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