Sunflower Bean Defies Odds With Sophomore Release

"Twentytwo In Blue" is the forthcoming album from Brooklyn rock trio Sunflower Bean.

Alternative Brooklyn rock trio Sunflower Bean arrived onto the scene in 2013, but it wasn’t until its captivating 2016 rock album “Human Ceremony” when they became a hot topic.

The band — which consists of lead guitarist and vocalist Nick Kivlen, bassist and lead singer Julia Cumming and drummer Jacob Faber — is set to release its second full-length album “Twentytwo In Blue” tomorrow. According to a recent interview with WSN, the band’s new release was inspired by fans from both ‘13 and ‘16.

“We had met a huge amount of amazing people who had come to our shows across the world, and we wanted to make a record for them,” Kivlen told WSN. “This album was a writing period of less than six months compared to ‘Human Ceremony,’ which was made up of tracks written over the course of a couple years.”

The band’s journey began senior year at the member’s high school. A configuration of the three would rock out in some gritty, collaborative sessions.


“Jake and I started jamming together after school during our senior year,” Kivlen told WSN. “That summer, I became really close friends with Julia and asked her to join. She came over and did the vocal take for ‘Bread’ [and] it was a magical moment.”

The chemistry in Sunflower Beam continued to grow and blossom. The trio meshed its influences and love of psychedelic rock music together and continued to create until they felt they had something special.

“I think it’s more of believing we had something worth following, and seeking out,” Cumming told WSN. “We felt magic between us and felt like we had no choice but to go for it.”

The band achieved this magic again with the upcoming release of “Twentytwo In Blue.” This is largely due in part to the album’s two producers: Matthew Molnar, who helped Sunflower Bean craft its sound on “Human Ceremony,” and newcomer Jacob Portrait.

“We know [Molnar] very well and are comfortable with him,” Cumming said. “He really helped us find our voice, especially on ‘Human Ceremony.’ Portrait was the new player in the room, and he is amazing at making sure that every sound is really special and different. We wanted every moment [in the studio] to be curated on the record, and he was a great person for the job. We love them both and can’t imagine ‘Twentytwo in Blue’ without them.”

The album’s leading singles — “Burn It” and “Crisis Fest” — were released earlier this year and directly confront change, not only here in the United States, but around the world.

“‘Crisis Fest’ is definitely where those feelings come to a head on the record,” Cumming said. “We went through many iterations of the vocals but found that the best thing to do was leave it as straightforward as possible. ‘We brought you into this place, you know we can take you out’ is a reminder to ourselves that we have the opportunity to change the world around us and to change the leaders in our country if we really want to. There are many reactions to the political climate on the record, but if we told everyone everything, that would ruin the fun.”

“Twentytwo In Blue” is out March 23. Sunflower Bean will headline Bowery Ballroom on April 26.


Email Robert Frezza at [email protected]



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