EP Premiere: Sharaya Summers’ Rich, Raw, and Dreamy Debut ‘Bend Before We Break’

Sharaya Summer © 2018
Sharaya Summers’ enchanting, euphoric debut EP ‘Bend Before We Break’ is a majestic wake-up call and a vivid dream all in one.
for fans of Father John Misty, Tennis, Lord Huron, Malena Zavala

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Do you still wonder?” inquires an enchanting Sharaya Summers about halfway through her debut EP. Singing sweetly through a wash of colorful guitar and keyboard work, the West Coast singer/songwriter paints a vivid portrait of longing and nostalgia – a melange of bright and dark hues that ebbs and flows like a strong, majestic river. It’s enough to evoke a youthful sense of awe and appreciation in all of us – no matter your age, place, or state of mind. If you’ve strayed from your wide-eyed former self, or feel like you’ve lost your spark, Sharaya Summers will bring you back and set you straight.

Bend Before We Break - Sharaya Summers

Bend Before We Break – Sharaya Summers

Atwood Magazine is proud to be premiering Sharaya Summers’ euphoric debut EP Bend Before We Break, independently out now! A wake-up call and a dream all in one, Bend Before We Break masterfully balances bliss and hardship, stability and doubt as Summers inhales darkness and exhales light.

Telling “a story of disillusionment, dysfunction and discovery,” Sharaya Summers introduced her magical sound to the world in mid-2017 and has kept running ever since, picking up accolades throughout the music blogosphere and racking up hundreds of thousands of online streams. The Portland born, Los Angeles-based artist-to-watch melds the promise of Tennis with the weight of Best Coast and the natural warmth of Father John Misty, taking her audience on aural journeys full of reflection, questioning, and whimsy. Blending indie pop with folk and psychedelic influences, her debut EP is an easy and engaging listen that feels fresh and resilient, often in spite of its heavier content.

“I was holding onto a lot when I wrote these songs,” Summers explains. “Disappointment, resentment, un-forgiveness, depression, childhood wounds. My heart was like a tree whose branches were sagging beneath the weight of time and over-ripened fruit. It was time to prune and lighten my load; these songs were that process for me.”

The title itself, Bend Before We Break, references that idea of coming to one’s very edge; of feeling fragile and breakable, like a lone snowflake or thin piece of glass. Summers dwells in plaintive spaces, challenging herself and her identity along the way. This theme repeats itself throughout the record, coming to a head in EP closer “Haunted,” whose music video is also premiering here today:


Mixing past and present perspectives through old home videos and current portraits, Summers confronts a world full of expectations and established values – one that was made for her before she was old enough to make the decision for herself.

“Haunted,” much like the songs before it, finds an artist opening herself up: Not sure of what she might find, Summers dives into the depths of her soul as track-after-track, she motivates and excites. From her stunning vocals to her rich melodies and raw imagery, Sharaya Summers makes a dazzling entrance that’s not soon forgotten. Experience the full record via our exclusive stream, and peek inside Bend Before We Break with Atwood Magazine as the Summers goes track-by-track through her debut album!

Stream: ‘Bend Before We Break’ – Sharaya Summers

:: Inside Bend Before We Break ::

Bend Before We Break - Sharaya Summer

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Prodigal

I used be very idealistic in what I would and wouldn’t put up with in a relationship. Now I realize we are all capable of being really shitty, and maybe it’s easier to forgive and move on, then to throw everything away. This is a song about grace and lowering our impossibly high standards.

Time to Wake Up

The existential crisis song that ties this whole project together. I was numbing myself to this meaningless life with sex, alcohol- whatever distraction I could find. Sleeping in fear of contemplating the things that I was afraid of, and the issues in my life. Here is the time to wake up and feel my pain and confront living out the innocence of youth.

Easy Life

I wrote this the night that Aleppo was under siege. It came from the overwhelming feeling that there is so much wrong with the world and it doesn’t feel like there is much I can do. I’m living this magically blessed life with someone who loves me. Just wishing that those who are less fortunate at least have someone there to love them when it all feels like too much.

Wonder

Do you wonder how our lives would have gone if we had stayed together? When running into exes. Looking back on the past, wondering how the choices we make affect our outcomes. Feeling of disillusionment on how life should have gone. Or what love should have looked like. Losing the wonder of youth and the way we used to look at love.

Light of the Moon

Being in a dark place, feeling depressed about the meaningless of life and loneliness. But finding hope in the beauty of nature and something beyond what we understand.

Haunted

Family issues, feeling confused about identity and other people’s expectations of how your life should go- specifically Christian values and the complexity of parent child relationships and how they affect you into adulthood.

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Bend Before We Break - Sharaya Summer

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📸 © 2018

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Mitch is the Editor-in-Chief of Atwood Magazine and a 2014 graduate from Tufts University, where he pursued his passions of music and psychology. He currently works at Universal Music Group in New York City. In his off hours, Mitch may be found songwriting, wandering about one of New York's many neighborhoods, or writing an article on your next favorite artist for Atwood. Mitch's words of wisdom to fellow musicians and music lovers are thus: Keep your eyes open and never stop exploring. No matter where you go, what you do or who you are with, you can always learn something new and inspire something amazing. Say hi here: mitch[at]atwoodmagazine[dot]com