Heartbreak Residue, the new LP from Bay-Area songwriter and activist Briget Boyle is a record
that is ripe with raw, honest emotion. Buoyed by propulsive percussion and shimmering electric
guitar, Boyle paints melodic pictures of the pivotal moments in life. Told with an eloquent
economy of language, she speaks to the universal human experience. The tales written in this
melodic jewelbox journal are imbued with a bittersweet nostalgia, yet they are far from maudlin.
Rather, Boyle’s gift of a voice, leaping effortlessly from aching and intimate, to a soaring,
razor-edged flash of power, rings with such a purity of sentiment that the listener is immediately
drawn into her world, soon to find themselves shouting along with every chorus.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, CA, Boyle got an early start in music. As the child of two music
industry veterans, being a musician was not just a calling, but part of her DNA. Her first
professional experience was working in Hollywood’s film scoring studios alongside her
legendary recording engineer father, the late Tim Boyle. She served as his second engineer for
Starship Troopers, Animaniacs, Money Talks, and more.
Boyle began writing songs when she was 12 years old, and attended the College of Santa Fe to
study Music Performance & Composition. It was there that she discovered the rich traditional
folk music of the Balkans, and quickly became a student of the voice and traditional singing
styles. She became a key member of various Bay Area world music ensembles, including Kitka
Women’s Vocal Ensemble (as featured soloist on multiple releases including The Rusalka
Cycle: Songs Between the Worlds, Sanctuary: A Cathedral Concert, and Cradle Songs), Brass
Menažeri Balkan Brass Band, and True Life Trio.
Boyle released her first solo record, The Parts Interior in 2014, and the stellar follow-up, The
Next Line in 2018. She has been featured on three albums with Brass Menažeri including
Resilient (Balkan Brass Hip Hop Collaboration with Mr. Lif), Brazen, and Vranjski San. The third
True Life Trio studio project, At My Window, is slated for release in the fall of 2023.
In 2016, she and her father founded Waxsimile Productions, an independent record label with a
mission to uplift the voices of diverse independent artists through equitable recording contracts,
hands-on career support, and project development assistance. During the 2020 lockdown, the
label partnered with queer musicians in the Bay Area to produce ten chapters of the I Need
Space Festival, which provided a safe and accessible place for musicians to perform during the
pandemic. In 2021, the Wax Collective was born, a group of queer artists supporting each other
in the endeavor to thrive off of our creations through sync licensing, publishing, producing, and
The songs on Heartbreak Residue were written in a lonely one-bedroom apartment in Oakland,
a bedroom in the basement in Chicago, and surrounded by majestic rocks and deeply rooted
Berkeley trees. It was recorded at ModernTone Studios in Lafayette, CA, where Boyle is a vocal,
guitar, and songwriting coach.
Produced by Modern Tone owner Jacob Light, the record features Boyle on guitar and vocals,
Light on electric guitar and synth, Waxsimile Collective member Genesis Fermin on drums, and
bassist David Wellerstein. Backing vocals were provided by Tim Silva, singer-songwriter Karen
Tobin (who also happens to be Boyle’s mother), and legendary Bay Area vocalist Vicki Randle.
Lewis Patzner played cello, Michael Bang played piano, and Juliana Graffagna from True Life
Trio played accordion on “Even-Keeled Heart”. “Heartbreak Residue” was co-written with Adri
Walker, a 15-year-old student of Boyle’s at ModernTone.
Thematically, Heartbreak Residue is exploration of how grief and heartbreak sit in our lives,
often long after the loss of love. A yearning for roots, family, and home, the terrible burden of
mental illness, and apologies never made resonate deeply, and feel all too familiar. Charting the
end of a marriage, seeking liberation from heartbreak, and the first tentative forays into the
search for new love, this record is deeply relatable and eminently human. Wrapped in a rocking
good sonic journey (the record is a bop, btw), listeners will find creative inspiration, hope for
healing, big feelings, and just plain old fashioned rock and roll. Quite a combination, indeed.
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