Singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Brigitte Bardini has just released her gorgeous debut album, Stellar Lights. It’s a collection of fourteen tracks, wonderfully diverse, showing a maturity way beyond what you would expect for a debut album. It perhaps shouldn’t come as a surprise that Bardini produced eight of the tracks herself, and the other six were co-produced with Adam Calaitzis at Toyland Studios in Melbourne.
From the atmospheric and dreamy “Heartbreaker” with its synths and programmed beats to the acoustic-driven “All My Life’, it’s an entrancing collection of songs. Brigitte has written a track-by-track breakdown for the AU, so sit back, press <Play> and have a read of what inspired the songs on Stellar Lights.
Stellar Lights from Brigitte Bardini – track by track
Funnily enough “Heartbreaker” was almost not going to make the album! Dad and I were at home, bored and I was showing him some of my recent projects. We came across Heartbreaker which was only completed somewhere into the first chorus and he insisted that I finish it. We only had a few days until the final master of the album so I had to complete the track, production and all, get it engineered, adjust the album track listing and get it ready in time for the master. Thankfully I worked ok under pressure and we ended up choosing the track as the next single which was an 11th hour choice. I’m really proud of how it turned out and feel very lucky I snuck this track in when I did.
“Wild Ride” was one of the first tracks I ever wrote. I know that I was listening to a lot of Beck and Doves at the time and was experimenting with genre. This is a track that escalated a lot of things in my career as, even as a rough demo, it showed the potential of what I could do. This really ties into the meaning behind the track and how it’s about my decision to follow my passions and pursue music full time.
I begun laying down “Everyday”’s vocals in the middle of the night as it was really one of those “I have to get this down now or i’ll forget it” moments. I remember experimenting a lot with my synth and finding a strong synth sound and how that could work with a nice soft melody and strings. This track is about lots of experiences, people and situations in my life combined. It definitely talks about caring so deeply for someone, how this can be a challenge and getting where you want to be in life by knocking down your barriers and letting go of judgements you put on yourself.
“Inside Your Head”
Inside Your Head really carries that vision in sound of floating in the air and walking on clouds which really reflects that dreamstate of being in love. I was singing about my emotions towards someone and how I wanted them to desire and love me the way I did them. I think when we feel deeply about someone one big question that can enter our mind is “what if they don’t feel the same way.” So I suppose this was my way of expressing how lucky and proud I felt to be with that person and with that also expressing the underlying sense of fear they might not have the same passion towards me.
“All My life”
“All My Life” is an acoustic guitar focussed track. The raw quality of sound that comes through in the acoustic guitar I think naturally evoked a lot of deep subjects for me to sing about. This tack is about a lot of my inner battles over the years and the way these challenges come around like a nameless faceless old friend throughout life until we confront them and ask what they’re really about. I think me singing about these challenges was very powerful for me and was an act of confronting those personal battles.
“Made Of Gold”
“Made Of Gold” is about knowing your worth. I think we’ve all had experiences that have made us feel inferior because of other people’s words or actions or even having subconsciously learnt things that make us tell ourselves we’re not as worthy or deserving. This track emphasises the things in life that matter and how they can’t be tarnished if you don’t let them.
This track is inspired by a moment in time and takes you through a very special experience I shared with a friend of mine. I love rehearsing this track because it’s so immersive and makes me feel at peace. The way it slowly builds and takes you to this place where everything merges together and hits you all at once is something I’m really proud of in “Breathe” as it perfectly reflects all the emotions I was feeling at the time I had this experience.
“Aphrodite” is based on the discovery that some people’s priorities are different to yours and that they may not care for you the way that you’d expect them to. “Aphrodite”’s mythology ties into this as I’m requesting for her, the goddess of love, to make this person see their faults and the hardships that they can cause. By the same token it’s also about accepting that people work differently to ourselves and we either accept that and have that person in our lives or we don’t.
“Feel My Love”
Feel My Love couldn’t have come about without my Roland FA/08. I really love the way the ambient sounds that i’ve chosen in the track bring about a sense of warm summer air and that dreamy feeling of loving someone. I realised I had deep feelings for someone when I wrote this track and was thinking about how this may come to an end, being young and the uncertainty of what life may bring and how I choose to enjoy it in the moment regardless.
This track was written on a hard rubbish Yamaha Hammond organ I picked up from the side of the road one night on an evening walk with a friend. It’s about my first real heartbreak and not feeling sour about how the events took place or any regret that they didn’t turn out differently but rather grieving how great things could have turned out and the loss of that fantasy. I don’t usually like to allow myself too many “should’ve” and “could’ve” moments as they’re based in the past and we can’t change that but I think this time it was necessary for me in order to move on fully.
This track is about letting things go. I feel that we can be so caught up in trivial things sometimes and it’s important to get some perspective and rather than judging yourself, just saying “what can I learn from this.” I realise every day how important it is to take pressure off myself and allow myself to feel things in a different way when I need it rather than feeling what I’ve been trained to feel over years of the same thinking patterns.
Speaking of thinking patterns… “Peacemaker” is about my experience with depression. I think that orchestral ballad style that came about in this track is so perfect for expressing how overwhelming things can become sometimes and for this reason it can make us shut down and feel completely numb. I knew that this was something I needed to write about and I don’t think the track would’ve ended up any other way regardless of when I wrote about it.
“More Like Love”
This track describes missing that feeling of love or deep infatuation and how that feeling alone can bring so much colour to life and can wake us up to all sorts of emotions. It’s about how we can move on from the someone that brought those feelings on but continue to seek love just purely for the way it makes us feel. I wanted to use epic elements like the guitar riff in the chorus and the strings into the end of the track to try and convey that euphoria and melancholy of love.
“Stellar Lights” is an instrumental track that really captures the overall energy of the album in terms of the dream-pop influence and ambient, airy qualities of sound. It also is like a soundtrack to the apocalyptic dream I had that was what a lot of this album was built around. It was an enlightening experience in terms of how vividly it displayed our vulnerability as humans and how rare it is that we came about which put so much into perspective for me and how important it is to embrace life and do what I love.