Julia Parr and Nik Brinkman are embarking on a new musical project, and they're calling themselves Physical.
While they're based in Wellington, New Zealand, the duo actually met in a karaoke bar in New York City in 2013. "My band at the time was in New York for CMJ, we had some drinks with Nik and some other mutual friends and found ourselves in a side street karaoke bar," Julia recounted. "We were the only group in there it was definitely a memorable night." Nik also shared his recollection of their first encounter with Musical Notes Global: "I was working on an EP for my previous project 'Junica' with English producer Mark Saunders at the time, and on a night off I was in lower east side with some friends and we all decided to meet up. We ended up in Chinatown doing karaoke - Me and Julia chose 'Drive' by the Cars."
Little did they know that that chance meeting in Chinatown would lead to something big between them. Two years later, in 2015, Nik approached Julia to work with him on a new project: "I talked to Julia about working together as I was just starting 'Ghostwriters Collective' at the time, and she was the first singer / collaboration for the project. This then lead us to making a full album together."
That album, which carries the title Ride It Out, was created with the help of their good friend Bevan Smith ('Introverted Dancefloor'/Glass Vaults), "who contributed some really cool rhythmic elements to the album," they said. "We wrote most of the album in a studio on Courtney Place in Wellington on Wednesday evenings and this one bar would play Shania Twain at least once every time we were there," the duo recalled. "Some of our demo tracks have drunken yells and car horns and all sorts of noises."
Ride It Out is scheduled for release later this year and will include 8 upbeat yet dramatic tracks that touch upon themes such as emotional survival. "Ride it Out is a collection of some really relatable pop songs," Julia explained. "For the first time I've written songs about my own feelings towards and experiences with specific people, I guess I was kinda scared to get too personal up until now but I got over it."
The two now admire each other's strengths and use them as inspiration to fuel their work. "Julia has a voice that I really love," Nik told Musical Notes Global. "This is basically enough to motivate me to finish any ideas we start working on." Julia expressed: "Nik has a really solid sense of melody and he was sending me these tracks that I just connected with straight away. We work well together, I think it's because Nik can put up with me being a brat!"
Physical's first sonically luscious single "Islands" is an especially personal track for Julia, as it tells the tale of a past relationship. The track is now available to stream and download on digital music platforms. Listen below and check out the Dntel remix here.