Phoebe Bridgers has announced her sophomore album, Punisher, by releasing the video for her new single “Kyoto.”
The video for “Kyoto” makes extensive, amusing use of green screen to place Bridgers in Japan. It was supposed to be filmed in the country, but travel restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic put paid to that plan.
“This song is about impostor syndrome,” Bridgers explained in a press release. “About being in Japan for the first time, somewhere I’ve always wanted to go, and playing my music to people who want to hear it, feeling like I’m living someone else’s life. I dissociate when bad things happen to me, but also when good things happen. It can feel like I’m performing what I think I’m supposed to be like. I wrote this one as a ballad first, but at that point I was so sick of recording slow songs, it turned into this.”
Besides “Kyoto,” Punisher will also include “Garden Song,” which Bridgers released in February. It was mixed by Mike Mogis, who had also worked on her 2017 debut LP, Stranger in the Alps.
Between Stranger in the Alps and now, Bridgers has kept busy with numerous collaborations: She released an EP with Julien Baker and Lucy Dacus as boygenius, and an album with Bright Eyes’ Conor Oberst as Better Oblivion Community Center.
More recently, boygenius provided backing vocals on “Roses/Lotus/Violet/Iris” by Paramore’s Hayley Williams. Bridgers collaborated with The National’s Matt Berninger on “Walking on a String,” and The 1975 on the song “Jesus Christ 2005 God Bless America.”
Punisher will arrive on June 19 via Dead Oceans. Watch the video for “Kyoto” here:
And watch Bridgers perform the song live from her bathroom for Jimmy Kimmel Live!: