As they grew more popular over the course of the last decade, it often felt as if BADBADNOTGOOD were always around. The malleable Toronto jazz group toured relentlessly, and their name appeared frequently alongside high-profile collaborators in the rap world. After releasing their last album, IV, in 2016 and subsequently taking it on the road, the band took a break around the end of 2018, a well-earned breather. We’ve heard some loose tracks since, and now BADBADNOTGOOD are back with the first new material we’ve heard from them in a little while.
Today, the band are releasing two new songs that are opposite sides of the same coin: “Goodbye Blue” and its instrumental counterpart “Glide (Goodbye Blue Pt. 2).” “Goodbye Blue” features vocalist Jonah Yano, who BADBADNOTGOOD previously teamed with for last year’s “Key To Love (Is Understanding).” Here’s what bassist/founder Chester Hansen had to say about the new material:
The end of 2018 was the beginning of the first long break from touring that we’ve had basically since we started as a band. It was a time of reflection and the opportunity for us to explore all sorts of things. “Goodbye Blue” was one of the songs that came out of this. Eventually, we worked some of the melodies and feeling into a second instrumental which felt like it stood on its own, but was definitely a companion piece. We hope that everyone enjoys these two songs and they offer some peace in these troubled times.
In many cases being told that there are vocal/instrumental variations of a track pretty much conjure up the image of a “finished” one with a singer, and an instrumental song that’s just everything else minus the singer. Of course, that’s not quite the case with a band like BADBADNOTGOOD. The two interpretations of “Goodbye Blue” allow the group to exercise their different impulses, Yano leading them through an airy R&B track on “Goodbye Blue” and “Glide” falling into a breathy, contemplative strain of jazz. Check them out below.