Brian Chillemi is a former member of the band Rose Cologne and in April 2021, he’ll release his debut album With Woman under the moniker CHILLEMI on Taxi Gauche Records. He’s taken on a bit of a rhinestone cowboy look for the project, with influences from Lee Hazlewood and Nick Cave. Today we’re premiereing a new single from the album called “FRIEND,” a song that laments the dissolution of friendship.
The song opens with a rhythmic acoustic guitar figure with some distant organ playing by Kyle Avallone in the background, adding a Western vibe to the track. It’s equally rooted in folk, country and psychedelia, with just a hint of mystery. The project has evolved over the course of 10 years as CHILLEMI toured the world. Upon moving from New York City to Los Angeles, the singer-songwriter has turned his focus to this solo endeavour.
“Musical relationships are intimate, emotional and complicated – just like any relationship,” said CHILLEMI. “I wrote ‘FRIEND’ after breaking up a band I had with some old friends. It was on the last song of a sold out show and I let the audience know this was the last one we will ever play. It was dramatic but at the time I didn’t really see any other way to be heard. I wanted to write a song about the general feeling of losing a friend or friends but also was questioning what it really means to be a friend to someone. When you’re being gaslit you don’t know what is up and what is down and are constantly made to question oneself. This song is that moment when you take a stand but it’s a sad affair either way.”