by Max Freedman (@anticlimaxwell)
tough boy is pretty soft. Brian Seidman, aka tough boy, gets most of his aggression out as guitarist and occasional lead vocalist in seething post-punk band Eagle Daddy (whose "Staircase" Post-Trash premiered earlier this year); his ironically titled pet project allows him to explore his more personal, forthcoming side. It began on a whim, as a way for him to occasionally escape Eagle Daddy’s abrasion, but over time, it’s become a growing focus of his rather than just a casual effort. In just two years, tough boy has released five EPs and a two-song single; as if this weren’t prolific enough, a sixth EP arrives this week. To celebrate the culmination of his tour with Most Selfless Cheerleader (whose music somewhat resembles two artists tough boy has previously opened for, Free Cake for Every Creature and Long Beard), hello will be released on cassette April 28 via Arrowhead Tapes. Post-Trash is thrilled to be premiering its third track, “i know myself.”
The song resembles the intimate simplicity of fellow Bandcamp sensations Alex G and Frankie Cosmos. Its tinny click track, unmodulated guitar picking, and multi-layered, partially pitch-shifted vocals offer a novel take on the oft-traversed realm of DIY singer-songwriter bareness. “i know myself” boasts the tough boy trademark of burying borderline uncomfortable self-doubt and body image issues in a tiny swirl of crestfallen, barely extant guitars and nearly muttered, yet still afflicting, vocals. “What’s a home but a place to store my body?/What are these clothes, why do I look so funny?” asks Seidman in one of the song’s more poignant lines, shortly before sarcastically stating that he knows himself. Although these questions might seem pouty to someone who’s mostly enjoyed confidence and happiness, to the average listener, they can be pretty tough to answer. And therein lies the true meaning of Seidman’s name for the project.
tough boy’s hello EP is out April 28 via Arrowhead Tapes.