A black and white portrait of Mattie Safer of Safer
photo by Lucas Walters

photo by Lucas Walters

Safer "Sleepless Nights"

The new song from Safer, the new project from Mattie Safer, singer and bassist for The Rapture and Poolside, sees a return to the dance punk sound he helped pioneer, while incorporating a powerful, soulful vocal delivery and a well honed pop sensibility that reflect his growth over the past decade.

Safer, the new project from Mattie Safer of The Rapture and Poolside have just released "Sleepless Nights", the fourth single and title track of the forthcoming debut EP Sleepless Nights. "Sleepless Nights" is a song with a long history, originally written for The Rapture’s Pieces Of The People We Love. According to Safer "It was a song that Ewan [Pearson] and Paul [Epworth, the producers of the album] loved, and we developed, but ultimately, because of internal politics, the record had to get set aside to avoid some hurt feelings. I've tried it a few different ways over the years, but this is by far the best and my favorite version. It’s really just a song about being in love with something that you know is bad for you. You want to leave it behind, but you just can’t help yourself." Listen below:

Safer "Sleepless Nights"

Safer has previously released three singles, “Good Things”, “Leave Me Alone”, and “All My Life” . Since May the band has also been performing extensively around Brooklyn, headlining shows at Union Pool, Ponyboy, Baby’s All Right, The Broadway and The Sultan Room.

The origins of the project go back to the late fall of 2017. "It all started after a night out drinking with an old friend…" says Mattie. How many great stories begin with those few words? Whether it was the familiarity of the company, the reminiscing, or the wine – capped off by hearing Joy Division blasting from a neighbour's apartment on the way home – something special happened that evening.

I was a bit tipsy, but I heard the music as I was walking and I thought 'That sounds great, I'm going to make something like that when I get home.

The ideas poured out of him. Within four hours of Safer stepping through his front door, he had demoed as many songs on his laptop – guitar, bass and rudimentary drums.

It felt amazing," he says. "I had been working in a different direction for quite a while, but this was so fun and easy. It felt like a relief, more than anything … like visiting an old friend that I hadn't seen in a while.

Once the initial buzz had worn off, hearing his work again in the cold light of the morning after, he was sure he was on to something. A few weeks and some more demoing sessions later, he played the tracks to a handful of trusted friends. Their reactions were all the encouragement Safer needed in order to focus fully on what he'd initially seen as an evening hobby, a side project to his 'day job' of writing for and recording with other artists, or developing ideas for a follow-up to his acclaimed 2016 EP All We Are. He decided to start a new band.

I was dealing with a lot of different producers," he says. "They'd often be away for a few weeks at a time because they were working on other projects, too, and it was always quite disjointed. This new music, it was just me. I had no intentions or aspirations for it, and I didn't really need anyone else to make it.

The artist Safer wearing a black overcoat and hanging from a grated fence
photo by Ilya Knight

photo by Ilya Knight

And so was born Safer, the new creative vehicle for Mattie’s songwriting and musical talents. That initial session kickstarted the writing and recording of an album's worth of songs over the course of the past year. The sound expanded from its bedroom origins to include live drums and friends who would come through and add additional percussion and vocals. The songs don't sound especially like the British post-punk icons, but the inspiration and circumstances were all he needed to create something of his own.

If the music sounds effortless, it's because it was. "It was all about having fun," he says. "It felt like I'd opened up a creative spigot that had been closed off for some time."

The new music sees Safer returning to the sound he's perhaps best known for – his energetic, driving basslines and distinctive vocal were a bedrock of The Rapture's first two albums – while incorporating a powerful, soulful vocal delivery and a well honed pop sensibility that reflects his growth over the past decade.

Safer's debut EP Sleepless Nights is out now on all digital platforms, and available on limited edition cassette via Bandcamp. You can also find Safer online via the links below.