VAN WILLIAM – ” Introducing “

Posted: September 29, 2017 in ALBUMS, MUSIC
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Hey there Port O’Brien fans. Did you get a chance to check out this mini-documentary on my life up on Kodiak Island in Alaska and the new Van William songs? Its been pretty amazing to see it spread so organically among people with Kodiak/Alaska/fishing roots and Port O’Brien fans. I appreciate all the sharing

Van here. I recently got back from my very last trip working on my dad’s boat up on Kodiak Island, Alaska. Saying goodbye to the amazing life up there has been devastating, but I wanted to share it with y’all. Port O’Brien has been a huge part of my life on Kodiak, from “Fisherman’s Son,” “Stuck On A Boat,” and “Sour Milk/Salt Water.” The new Van William songs are less specifically about that life, but are buried in the anxiety that comes from saying goodbye to it, and offer a retrospective of what it has meant to me. I am very proud and excited to share this short documentary about my life up in Alaska and the new Van William project.

Van William’s bleeding heart may be eternally affixed to his sleeve, but very few songwriters can make the therapeutics sound so fun.  Known for the meticulous alt-pop song craft of his former acclaimed indie outfits, Port O’Brien and WATERS, Van William (nee Pierszalowski) offers an auspicious glimpse into a promising future.

Always the creative force that fueled his musical endeavors, William’s newfound independence allowed room to roam in fresh and exciting ways.  The songs reflect the pain and disillusionment of lost love, have a dark, messy edge as William’s consistently dazzling melodies and stirring choruses carry the emotional subject matter to striking affect.   

So many songs have taken on new meaning over the past nine months or so. Ask Van William about his song “Revolution” and he’ll tell you that it “started as a song about the anxieties of being in a relationship, where both people want to fix its broken parts, but disagree on the means,” but “became something else during and after the 2016 election.”

However, that original inspiration was the video’s guiding force, Van William told me. “Something simple and stark that followed a linear progression into the madness found in the waning days of a romantic relationship. I wanted the video to show the claustrophobic feeling that can form by sharing too much of each other’s lives and being unable to repair the damage from inside the walls of what was built together.” It’s an idea, he says, that came while binge-watching Ingmar Bergman films.

Director Grant James wrote to tell me that “‘Revolution’ is an emotional performance delivered by Van, as well as First Aid Kit’s Klara and Johanna Söderberg, within the confines of a black void. The focus was to compose moving portraits of the artists that express the meaning behind the lyrics of the song as the musicians go through an emotional journey individually and together. The result delivers a variety of raw and striking imagery that balances the fine line between high-fashion cinematography and keeping our subjects grounded in their own natural aesthetic and realism.”

Video Directed by Jonathan Chu. Featuring Laura Burhenn (The Mynabirds). “Never Had Enough of You” is off “The Revolution EP” out now.

The Revolution EP is the solo debut for Van William having been in previous bands WATERS and Port O’Brien. That EP will be out in September with a full length in 2018.

What did I miss? check out this playlist of the songs of – Van William, Van here. I made a Spotify playlist that features songs I’ve made through the years that I’m still proud of. It has songs from my new project Van William as well as WATERS and of course PORT O’BRIEN. Take a listen and see if there are any POB songs that you feel like have been woefully omitted’

Five and Dime
My Eyes Won’t Shut
Fisherman’s Son
Stuck On A Boat
I Woke Up Today (AWCDWS version)
Close the Lid
Sour Milk/Salt Water
Calm Me Down
My Will Is Good
Oslo Campfire


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