Photo by Michael Andrade; heartthrob hair by Bry Bry.

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Tomorrow, Baby Bry Bry & The Apologists—-local makers of melodic art-pop punk and the namesake of a new rye whiskey barrel-aged coffee at Qualia—-will release what frontman Bryan Gerhart is calling the band’s first “thing.”

That thing, I Learned To Drown Myself Out, Part I, is a high-contrast couplet of tracks that opens with a frantic, frustrated three-chorder: “Lately,” premiering here.

“Lately”‘s opening surf-rock tremolo launches into a tightly wound tirade from a dude too proud to admit that the object of his non-affection is messing with his daily habits. “Lately I don’t get much sleep/But it’s not cause I’m thinking about you/Cause I’m not thinking about you,” Bry Bry screeches, his voice coming straight from a tensed-up, strung-out gut.

After a scuzzy guitar solo, the track slows down into a melancholy moment of self-reflection (“Tell myself enough and it’s bound to come true”), complete with a backing chorus of oohs and wahs and what sounds like a glockenspiel, Bry Bry crooning a tune that wouldn’t feel out of place in a mid-century soda shop.

The other track on I Learned To Drown Myself Out, Part I, “Just Because It’s Art (Doesn’t Mean It’s Good)” is a deliberate, paced-out ballad with an earworm-y, reverb-heavy hook. Download the duo of songs for free on Baby Bry Bry’s Bandcamp page tomorrow, or buy the tape, which includes two bonus tracks (a cover of Big Black‘s “Bad Penny” and “Slumzzz”), at Baby Bry Bry & The Apologist’s release show at the Pinch tonight. It’ll also be available online tomorrow.

Stream “Lately” below.

https://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/artsdesk/files/2014/10/01-Lately.mp3?_=1

Baby Bry Bry & The Apologists play the Pinch tonight with Muuy Biien and Wing Dam, and the Rock & Roll Hotel on Nov. 7 with Beach Fossils and the Sea Life.