After spending time on the road promoting 2014’s Future Runs Magnetic, Matt Drenik took a break and retreated into his basement studio in Portland, OR to start writing. And although Future Runs Magnetic was largely received as a big guitar rock record, Drenik happened upon a different direction. Back to the piano, chasing melodies and ballads, recording them to his iPhone and then turning them upside down into songs. He tapped his brother Jason Drenik (Hairy Patt Band) to co-produce. The two went back and forth, referencing the sounds of Roxy Music, David Bowie, Jim Carroll, with a mutual admiration of the lyrical vortex their songs created.
Soon, twenty sketches turned into twenty songs and Drenik booked time at Revolver Studios (Portland, OR). With the help of Paul Pulvirenti (Elliott Smith, No. 2) on drums and a revolving cast of players, including Battleme's Chad Savage, JJ Eliot, Colin Hegna (Brian Jonestown Massacre), and William Slater (Grails, Denver). Drenik began morphing the songs into something more than just basement demos. They took on a fierce, swirling, garage stomp, rooted in the 70’s. These were jams, focused but loose. Gone were the melody driven hooks and soaring guitars that had dominated Future Runs Magnetic, replaced with grit, street, and strut.
The resulting fourteen songs make up Battleme’s third full length, Habitual Love Songs, an infectious blend of fuzzy, sonic, psychedelic, slacker pop. From the nocturnal binge of “All Night, All Night” to the adolescent past of “Pete’s Song,” Drenik finds new ways to interpret things past. The ratty, childhood friends of “The Boats In Ohio” give way to the street screaming blur of “Go” and a nod to a lost friend in "Back to You." But nothing captures Drenik's mind quite like “Post Is Dead,” where he sums up his last year of touring in a single swoop, “I can’t survive alone.”