BUBBLE TEA AND CIGARETTES: "Santa Monica" Digital Single and Video-clip

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When Kat and Andi moved to New York city, their bedroom became the place where they created BUBBLE TEA AND CIGARETTES, a project that looks for an intimate connection with the listener: melancholy, nostalgia, evocation and immensely beautiful melodies. Here at Elefant, we adore slow-paced dream-pop, and we are excited to announce that the band has joined the label and, after the summer, will release their first album.

Before this song we are bringing you today, they have released two Digital Singles. Their first song was “5AM Empanada With You”, which came out on July 31, 2020, and it was the song that started it all. It was a typically Friday night under the influence, but a melodic idea suddenly struck Andi at 3 am while walking on the street. The couple rushed back home and recorded the melody with the guitar which became the intro of the song. They added some MIDI drums and bass, and it immediately sounded so good that they started slow dancing to it for the entire night. Then they went outside to buy some empanadas and the sky started turning bright. From then on, everything flowed. It became a song reflecting the summertime memories about lost love that set the scene for the melancholic slow ballad, drifting between dreaminess and nostalgia, fantasy and the purest, most beautiful emotion.

On August 14 of the same year, they released “Go Downstairs To The Blue Moon, Buy Some Fried Chicken”, which was also inspired by the nightlife of New York City. It was composed on another Friday as they were walking around the Lower East Side around 2 a.m. to get some fried chicken. The streets were still busy and the bars were full. The marvelous opening melody popped into to Andi's head while they were having fried chicken in their hands and they jokingly improvised the lyrics "Do you wanna go downstairs to the Blue Moon, buy some fried chicken". But later on, they decided to actually keep the line since it’s cool. It is a song that explores one’s true feelings amidst the echoes of an overwhelming city, where the night creates a dream-space for escaping from the depression of the daily routine. Once again, we have the subtle highlight of the melodic, tender, crystalline guitar that adds to the overall moody atmospherics. The rhythm meld effortlessly with the whispering vocalisations that deeply connects with the listeners emotionally.

Right now is all about “Santa Monica”, a previously unreleased song that is a perfect example of the group’s sound: distant reverb guitar, ethereal and hazy vocals swirl around dark bass-lines, and simple yet addictive melodies. In this song, the image they wanted to convey was an evening driving a convertible down the Pacific Coast Highway in California underneath a violet hue sky right before sunset. But when they were composing the song, they were stuck in the cold winter of New York during quarantine. It was a struggle to get it right and it felt like nothing was working. Andi then spent hours watching videos shot in California to develop the emotional vibe. When he finally finished the song demo and showed it to Kat, it was so beautiful and subtle that made her cry. The song tells a story that fills our heads with images that evoke unforgettable moments, sensations that make us feel warm inside, that is capable of connecting the sound to a million different things.

This is all excellently represented by Shicong Zhu (a talented Los Angeles-based film director) with a video that shows us a car snaking around cliff-side highways overlooking the ocean. Two friends are enjoying their moment of freedom, with the ocean and the sunset in the backdrop. The photography is magnificent, and everything seems perfectly fitting the song - the smiles, the color of the water, the melody from the guitars, Kat’s singing… It’s a rollercoaster of feelings, alternating between tenderness and goosebumps. It extracts the deepest emotions of the listeners to the surface.


On this new single, as on their first two songs, the mixing is done by Anthony "Rocky" Gallo (Norah Jones, Cat Power, THE XX, CIGARETTES AFTER SEX, THE KILLERS, THE CLIENTELE…) and the mastering by Greg Calbi (Stevie Wonder, John Lennon, David Bowie, TAME IMPALA, ARCADE FIRE, St. Vincent, PERFUME GENIUS, BLONDIE, Aretha Franklin and so many others).

Take a deep breath, sit by the window, look out at the sky and the clouds, hit play and let yourself go with the music. You know exactly what we are talking about.


TRACKLIST: 01 Santa Monica





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