Photo courtesy artist

Aaron Taos just released his new album Closure & Campari, but the record has actually been in development for some time.

Perhaps that's a good thing, because according to the singer, the inspiration behind the album was very personal—the aftermath of a breakup and navigating the space between splitting up and actually letting go.

"It's an album that I wrote about a breakup that actually happened like three years ago," he says, speaking with Variance about the new record. "So this has been in the works for a bit. And then I released a couple singles off of it. And then the pandemic happened and then my song 'Control' kind of blew up on TikTok and all that stuff. And then signing with The Orchard. So it kind of put a hold on me releasing this project."

Taos is currently on tour with fellow alt-rockers Weathers as part of their North American trek, but he spent the summer on a personal trek of his own, jetting off to Europe with friends and getting away after a challenging past year.

"I spent the whole freaking summer in Europe," says Taos. "Pretty much just fucking off and getting out of dodge and just being with my friends [and] road tripping and actually not doing much music. So it's been pretty fun and decently relaxing and sort of a bender."

Photo courtesy artist

It's quite the contrast from the material on the record itself. But the good thing is, the distance between the real-life events and the record has been for the best. As Taos puts it, the underlying story behind the album is a "little bit old news." That's allowed him to decompress and heal.

"I call it a post-breakup album because my ex and I broke up," he recalls. "And then we kind of orbited each other's worlds for another year. And the album is about that space. It's about the time after you're done, but you're not really done. That gray area between breaking up and actually calling it quits."

Those feelings are evident all throughout the album, as Taos tries to make sense of the past while still unsure about the present, reflective of a guy who is heartbroken, who still cares about his ex, but is also a bit sour.

"It's just the closure process," he says. "It's messy and it doesn't always make sense."

Now, Taos gets to test out the new music live, as he plays his first shows in nearly two years. Like much of the music industry trying to inch back into live settings, he has been eager to get back out there.

"I played briefly in Germany," he says. "I happened to be there when an artist I'm friends with, that. I have a song with, invited me to play at a festival. So I came out for one song last month, which is fun, but this tour will be like the first proper string of shows in almost two years. And you know, it's really good timing with the release of this album. So I'm really excited."

He adds: "One of the things about the pandemic that was a little bittersweet was that my song 'Control' did really well on the ['NBA 2K'] video game, it was on TikTok, and yet I haven't been able to play live to even take advantage of that. So it's exciting for me to see how it all translates live. I'm ready to finally be able to get back out there. ■