The Charleston-based band Brave Baby has been off the radar for awhile but is now making a return to the forefront of the South Carolina music scene. The band will travel up to Columbia on Thursday night to perform at New Brookland Tavern — the gritty, intimate music venue where followers of local music often congregate.
Keon Masters is the lead vocalist of Brave Baby and explained that the central location of New Brookland within the state made it an appealing place to play, especially when the group was first starting out.
“If you played in a band from Charleston — or guys from, like, Myrtle Beach area or kids from Charlotte — we could all kind of meet in Columbia and play,” Masters said.
Though the band hails from the Lowcountry, they are always well-received in Columbia. Masters said that they always seem to return to New Brookland despite having played in other venues.
“It has the right size for the show and also it's just kinda been a nucleus for the South Carolina music scene for a long time,” he said.
The concert coincides with the release of a new music video for the song “Soothsayer.” It is the first single on Brave Baby’s new album, which does not have an official release date but is tentatively planned to drop in early 2018.
This is excellent news for Brave Baby’s followers, especially as the band comes off of a year and a half of quiet, stemming from major changes in both the members’ personal lives and in the group’s dynamic.
Two members got married, two left the band, and a new studio was built. It became challenging for the band to continue producing music while they sorted everything out.
“There were some times where it was kind of unnerving, where we weren’t sure if we were going to keep doing this thing,” Masters said.
But the Brave Baby pulled through. They began writing music again and getting back into the swing of everything.
“We all kind of ... put our heads down, kept rolling, worked on new music all the time and we’re finally at a place where we feel comfortable ... playing more shows again and getting back out,” he said.
Brave Baby will play songs from the new record on Thursday night, which will have a different sound than the music they have put out in the past. This isn’t surprising, as there was a definite shift in sound between the first album, “Forty Bells” and their sophomore album “Electric Friends.”
“It’s lighthearted, but it’s also still pretty sincere,” Masters said of their new music.
Regardless of the change in sound, the music still maintains the essence of the band, and the lyrics will still be personal and born out of experiences.
Masters explained that much of the writing process comes from simply “paying attention” and that some songs from the next album are derived from the challenges the band went through this year, though the lyrics can be interpreted in different ways.
“They might appear to be romantic, but often times we’ll be talking about, like, bandmates, or friends or each other,” Masters said. “And, you know, on this new record we have a song that’s about ... Brave Baby kind of, like, falling apart … but it’s kind of like ... I’m talking about a girl.”
Masters spoke highly of other bands originating South Carolina, two of which will be playing on Thursday night at New Brookland Tavern: Dear Blanca and 2 Slices. He noted several other groups around the state such as ET Anderson, Susto and The Artisanals.
“We’ve got a really strong scene brewing in South Carolina,” Masters said. “There’s great fans in South Carolina too.”