Pronounced ‘Bryce’, 27-year-old Londoner Brijs’ musical ventures place him apart from all those riding the conventional rehearse-gig-record-gig carousel. Sure, he’s walked those boards too, having played bass on stage and in the studio for Will Joseph Cook prior to the latter signing for Atlantic Records. But it’s his solo compositions, whether written for the screen or the wider pop market, which have been earning him acclaim. Brijs’ debut EP, ‘Friends’, went straight into Spotify’s star-making Fresh Finds playlist, while another early demo, ‘Thunder’, was plucked by Strongbow for the cider giant’s 2016 commercials. Then there are Brijs’ film scores, his soundtracks including the 2016 short We Love Moses, which recently won Best British Short at the London Critics Circle Film Awards, The Dinard British Film Festival and the Iris Prize Festival.
As for influences and inspirations, Brijs says he’s moved on from the downbeat and somewhat aloof indie-pop scene he once aspired to. “Over the past couple of years I’ve come to appreciate the heart on the sleeve approach — to embrace the cliche that was somehow more acceptable in the past,” he declares, citing a soundscape somewhere between indie pop and psych pop, featuring big hooks, led by guitar riffs, classic synths and drum machines. Specific touchstones encompass some Seventies and Eighties greats – Bowie, Fleetwood Mac, Springsteen, Paul Simon — alongside more contemporary acts ranging from The Shins, Tame Impala and Arcade Fire through to Father John Misty, Phoenix, Unknown Mortal Orchestra and beyond.
With a debut album on its way and plenty more screen ventures to come, Brijs continues to make waves as a versatile musician, composer and producer, broadening the nation’s sonic architecture via whatever format presents itself.
“I’ve always heard a disco banger hidden somewhere beneath the magnificent depths of the original and finally decided to eek it out.” Taking the submerged melody of Jai Paul’s enigmatic 2012 demo and thrillingly repurposing it into a blissful psych-disco cut of dancefloor intent, tipped London-based artist Brijs returns with a worthy bid for the ranks of definitive covers. His infectious interpretation was put together in respectful homage to the original. “I can’t speak for Jai,” says Brijs, “but for me this song came to represent insecurity in two relationships with people who were way out of my league. I wanted to frame that bittersweet place between the flattery of the attention from that person we are infatuated with and the anxiety of believing they deserve better. The song,” adds Brijs about the sentiments he expresses in a near-euphoric take, “speaks to an underdog in love.”