Portland’s Corvair share ‘Unsubtle Lake’ video

Corvair press photo
Photo credit: Mel Suchowolec

Portland-based duo Corvair shared the lyric video for Unsubtle Lake, the latest pre-release single from their forthcoming album. The band will release their self-titled, debut album on February 19 via Paper Walls in the U.S. and WIAIWYA in the UK (pre-order). The record includes work with drummer Eric Eagle (Jesse Sykes, Wayne Horvitz) and engineer Martin Feveyear (Brandi Carlile, Mark Lanegan, Mudhoney), who also mixed the record. 

The video was directed, filmed and edited by Brian Naubert of Corvair. Unsubtle Lake was one of the last songs recorded on the album, so the band permitted themselves to be looser and more spontaneous as they overdubbed this track in their home studio during the first COVID shutdown of Spring 2020. They pulled out instruments from deep in the closet, including Brian’s vintage orange Flying V, some kids’ bongos that they then phased and distorted, and an old percussion “frog” that has appeared on many of Heather’s records over the years. The song is a retelling of a first encounter. Heather explains, “It’s so strange that you usually don’t have the luxury of knowing that you’re experiencing a moment that is going to totally change your life. This song was us playing out the fantasy of total omniscience, being able to go back to a crucial scene and watch it unfold again, knowing the butterfly effect that was starting right then and there.” Watch the lyric video via YouTube below.

About the album

Combined, Brian and Heather have created or performed on more than twenty albums. But this album marks the first time they join forces on a musical project. Although the band started in 2019, their eponymous debut album was largely created during the COVID pandemic shut-down of spring 2020. “Recording and writing new music without the benefit of testing ideas in front of a live audience was strange,” says Brian. “But ultimately, it gave us the freedom to really play with ideas and explore things we hadn’t ever tried before.”

Threading together 70’s pop, 80’s synth rock and 90’s indie rock, influences from The Carpenters to ELO, Cheap Trick to Metric, Corvair somehow sounds like nothing you’ve ever heard and everything you’ve always loved.

This power pop duo attributes their sudden explosion of compelling songwriting to the fact they have been friends who watched each other’s musical trajectories for many years, but only recently decided to collaborate in music and in life by getting married. “I first met Brian in the 90’s at the NXNW festival when he was in a much-hyped Peter Buck-produced band called Tube Top” says Heather. Brian adds, “We hit it off instantly but we danced around the relationship idea for many years. Right after we got married in 2017, I did a 30-day songwriting challenge where I wrote several songs a day, and once I started workshopping the songs with Heather, we realized we had a great record on our hands.”

Their debut album is full of anthemic, richly-harmonied songs that narrate the uncertainty and raw emotion of ultra high-stakes love. Brian explains, “These are definitely the most exposed and truthful lyrics we have ever written. And musically, we just went for it. We didn’t try to talk ourselves out of weird moves, like laying some Mamas and Papas style harmonies next to a Cars-esque keyboard solo or aggressive guitar work.” Heather adds, “We are so happy that our first singles have had such a positive response, that our strange cocktail of feelings and sounds is connecting with people who aren’t in the same house as us.” 

Corvair cover artwork

Corvair’ track listing

1. Oceansided
2. Paladin
3. Sailor Down
4. Daily Double
5. Sunday Runner  
6. Green (Mean Time)
7. Focus Puller 

While the band prepares to assemble a live unit for post-COVID life, they will be releasing more online content in the coming months and recording a second album late this spring. 

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