Photo credit: Alexandra Berg
This Friday, Z Berg will release her solo album Get Z To A Nunnery (digital pre-save or vinyl pre-order).
In anticipation of Friday’s release date, the album is streaming in full along with an exclusive interview with Z Berg at Alternative Press.
On Get Z To A Nunnery
, Z Berg was assisted in recording by a cast of Los Angeles-based musical luminaries. Producer Ethan Gruska
, a brilliant solo artist in his own right, haunts the record with his signature delicate piano playing and backwards Kaleidaloop ghosts. The string charts of Patrick Warren
(Fiona Apple, Lana Del Rey, Bob Dylan, Tom Waits
) essentially serve as the backing band. They are the kind of charts you might find from Henry Mancini or Andre Previn – the score to a movie that was never made. The inimitable guitar playing of Blake Mills sneaks in every now and again. The haunting harmonies of Phoebe Bridgers
and Madison Cunningham
are also featured, just to twist the knife a little bit more. And it all ends with a tragic, autobiographical Christmas duet with longtime musical collaborator Ryan Ross
(Panic at the Disco, The Young Veins
Fans can join Z Berg on Friday, July 10 at 3pm PST / 6pm EST for her Record Release and Visual Album premiere live from Sound City studios hosted by Dash Radio.
Tune in HERE
to stream the show, participate in a Q&A and watch the premiere of the official videos created by Z that accompany Get Z To A Nunnery.
Last Month Z Berg shared the official video for “To Forget You,” the first single to be lifted from the forthcoming release, with Flood Magazine
. The video was directed by Lauren Rothery
and Z Berg and also be shared at YouTube.
“To Forget You” is available now on all streaming platforms
to add to your favorite playlists.
Get Z To A Nunnery is a raw and stripped down representation of her writing, allowing listeners to really see what it has always been. It’s a sort of gothic-romantic femme-fatale folk record; it’s chamber-pop with a bit of grit and a healthy dose of tragedy. It’s a little bit Francoise Hardy…a little bit Dusty Springfield on drugs…a little bit Nico without them. It feels like dusting off a forgotten gem from another time, like the almost unimaginably late discovery of Nick Drake, Linda Perhacs or Scott Walker. Many of the songs deal with the suspended animation of regret and resignation, of repetition of patterns and refusal to move on – the inside of the record mirrors the outside. It’s a quiet and ethereally beautiful presentation of pain – psychedelic ASMR pocket symphonies about the scars left by wildness and love and death and drugs and loss and growing up much too fast.
Z Berg’s acid wit and preternatural talent fueled her first band, teenage girl-group, The Like, who made wistfully-dreamy new-wave and spiky mod-pop, anchored by Berg’s world-weary romanticism and fierce intelligence. They began at the tender age of fifteen and toured with everyone from The Strokes and The Arctic Monkeys to Phoenix, Dinosaur Jr., Muse and Maroon5. They travelled the world like a feral street gang, leaving behind blood-stained bobby pins and a trail of reverb. The band would work with Wendy Melvoin (of Prince and the Revolution) and Mark Ronson before their untimely demise. This was followed by Phases, an exercise in pure pop exuberance formed with a group of dear friends including Alex Greenwald (of Phantom Planet) and Jason Boesel (of Rilo Kiley and Bright Eyes).
Every aspect of Berg’s world is an exercise in tearing down walls, making everything she does feel like a fever dream and perhaps sometimes like an insidiously-slowly-creeping fever-nightmare. Get Z to a Nunnery is as much of a record as it is a mission statement. It is the end of an era and the beginning of another. It’s a collection of songs written over the course of chaotic years that always seemed like borrowed time. It is both small and uncontainable. With its wistful tragedy, its graceful unease, its listless love, and its resigned existential dread, it may just be the perfect music for the moment…the perfect soundtrack to the end of the world.