“two slow-burn songwriters who sound like they compounded each other’s daring on their first single, ‘Anything at All’…the track continually builds and bristles, starting with a skulking bass line and peaking with an onslaught of frenetic guitars.” – The New York Times
“‘Anything At All’ an expertly designed piece of indie rock: a tasteful bass bump anchors the track, while guitars, synths, and pianos flicker anxiously during the verses before a big guitar hook that’s all carom and crunch, like a tidal wave on repeat.” – Rolling Stone
“A groovy ballad all about unrequited, queer love, the sound feels fresh and new for both artists” –Billboard Pride
“highlight the duality between restraint and release…Bachelor appears to be a push for both Kempner and Duterte into a more eerie, post-punk direction that doesn’t compromise on intimacy.”
“a sparkling mix of both artist’s distinctive sounds.” – NYLON
Palehound’s Ellen Kempner and Jay Som’s Melina Duterte recently announced their new collaborative project Bachelor and shared acclaimed first single ‘Anything At All’. Today, the duo announces their debut album — Doomin’ Sun due out May 28 on Milk! Records / Remote Control Records — alongside brand new ‘Stay in the Car’ track and music video directed & edited by Haoyan of America. On the bass-heavy rock song, the duo paint a yearning portrait of a woman in a supermarket parking lot, a barely-contained desire oozing out of cotidian descriptions like: “She burns out of the market/ Plastic bags digging into wrists/ Blood stuck in her fingertips.”
Kempner explains, “I wrote the lyrics to ‘Stay In the Car’ back in December of 2019 when I was in Florida for my partner’s top surgery. I had run out one afternoon, post op, while he was healing to grab lunch for us and as I was gathering my stuff in the parking lot, a big car pulled up and this absolutely beautiful woman got out. She was dressed all in red, dripping with jewelry and had the most wild fiery mane I’d ever seen. She was yelling at the man behind the wheel asking him what he wanted from the store and I wished I was that man. I wanted to be a part of her life, her best friend, her driver, whatever she wanted me to be. I was completely mesmerized.”
Duterte continues, “We wanted this song to be a visceral listening experience, inspired by The Pixies and The Breeders. For the music video, we worked on a two-day shoot with Haoyan of America in Poughkeepsie in extremely cold weather. We all collaborated on the idea that our friendship should be portrayed in a fun and stylish way. Haoyan captured that energy in his own unique and creative lens through his collection of 80s/90s/00s props and toys, CGI, and anything car-themed.”
Kempner and Duterte hybridized their individual songwriting talents, producing a collection that slips between moods with ease and showcases their lyrical prowess. While the album features collaborations with the likes of Big Thief’s Buck Meek and James Krivchenia, as well as Duterte’s partner and Routine-counterpart Annie Truscott of Chastity Belt, the record was largely made by the two musicians in isolation as a fitting precursor to the forthcoming year. Creating the space to explore significant themes from queerness to climate change, the collection also finds Bachelor experiencing pure, unadulterated joy: the kind of joy that can only come from creating, laughing, and having a ridiculous amount of fun with a close friend.
Written and recorded in Topanga, CA over the course of two weeks in January of 2020, pre-pandemic, Doomin’ Sun is a record steeped in friendship.