Phoebe Bridgers has had a non-stop ascendent few years, and it’s easy to forget that she only actually has one solo album to her name. Earlier this year, she announced she’d soon return with her highly anticipated sophomore outing, Punisher. So far, we’ve heard “Garden Song” and “Kyoto” — and it was a promising start, with both ranking amongst our favorite songs in their respective weeks. And now, Bridgers is back with another new one.
The latest preview of Punisher arrives in the form of “I See You.” “It’s about my breakup with my drummer,” Bridgers said of the song’s inspiration. “We dated for a few years, made music every day, and were extremely codependent. We became like family to each other, so our breakup was extremely tough. But if this tells you anything about our relationship, we wrote this song together, just like everything else.”
“I See You” sits somewhere between the restrained “Garden Song” and the more uptempo “Kyoto” — a fleshed-out, blooming track, with Bridgers’ vocals soaring then diving above a gently churning arrangement. Lyrically, Bridgers traces all the corners of a relationship crumbling, from the poetic — “If you’re a work of art/ I’m standing too close/ I can see the brushtrokes” — to the amusingly and/or disconcertingly banal, like “I hate your mom/ I hate it when she opens her mouth/ It’s amazing to me how much you can say when you don’t know what you’re talking about.” And then, finally: “I used to light you up/ Now I can’t even get you to play the drums.” Check it out below.
Bridgers, like everyone else, was supposed to be on the road supporting Punisher in a different version of 2020. But today she’s also announced a series of shows from home called Phoebe Bridgers’ World, Tour — taking Bridgers to her bathroom, kitchen, and bed. It has a fun poster:
Punisher is out 6/19 via Dead Oceans. Pre-order it here.