Tennis System’s Matty Taylor says, “”Dizzy” is about the time I had during the pandemic to reflect on myself. I used that time to really dive deep inside me and decide what I wanted out of life, or what’s left of it.
The video for “Dizzy” is meant to show my perspective of the day of a show. The things I typically do the day of a show, from the Yerba mate I drink to the tacos I eat. How I find peace before the chaos.”
Tennis System has announced a short run of West Coast dates in December (SF, LA and San Diego) with Fearing and Deyssi. See dates/admat below.
The upcoming ‘Autophobia’ is Tennis System’s first new full-length since 2019’s ‘Lovesick’ and marks a thrilling new chapter and a logical shift in sound for the project.
Autophobia, defined by any dictionary, is the persistent, crippling fear of being alone. For Taylor, the very idea of making an album in the midst of a pandemic, in lockdown without a band—startlingly alone—was enough to trigger it. For months, as venues sat empty and legions of musicians also searched for meaning, he wrote nothing, played nowhere, and let the dust gather.
Rather than a failure, Autophobia is nothing short of a wildly catchy and moving album. Tennis System’s most personal offering, it is minimalist and vocals-driven, the unlikely bedroom project of a feral live musician — music to memorialize a lost year. With Johnson, Taylor veered from the scuzzy guitars and pummeling drums he’s known for, instead weaving synth and drum machines with live drums and guitar — and even the hum of a swarm of bees — to form a tapestry of textured soundscapes, unlike anything he’d created before. “Writing these songs without a band let me make music without having to meet anyone’s expectations but my own,” says Taylor. In unprecedented times, “I focused on making the record I wanted to make.”
What inspired him now was our basest human instincts, revealed in stark relief this year. “You see the desperation,” he says. “Relationships were falling apart. You saw people doing Instagram Live every day just to feel a connection to people, to feel relevant, to fulfil some craving to not be alone.” Of the collective existential crisis of the Instagram economy, he declares, “It’s autophobia in and of itself.”
About Tennis System:
Guitarist/vocalist Matty Taylor’s veteran project launched in Washington, DC, where it quickly gained a reputation for ear-crushing live shows that blended shoegaze grandeur and punk urgency. (Taylor, raised in the DC area, had all but steeped in the music of Fugazi, Bad Brains, and Nation of Ulysses — the sounds of discord that now underpin Tennis System’s sound.) He quickly left for the sunwashed scenes of Los Angeles, where the band’s slash-and-burn shows in near record time earned the project the distinction of being named “one of the city’s best live acts,” by LA Weekly. Soon, they were playing the legendary Amoeba Records, holding court during a residency at the Echo and performing regularly at the city’s iconic Part-Time Punks showcase, not to mention Austin Psych Fest, Noise Pop Fest, Echo Park Rising and the Air + Style festivals. What Tennis System “has perfected is a pulverizing blend of noise and melody,” wrote The Big Takeover, while Revolver says the band’s sound rocks “like a lost Sonic Youth banger.” ‘Autophobia’ is Tennis System’s fourth full-length album, following ‘Lovesick’ (2019), ‘Technicolor Blind’ (2014) and ‘Teenagers’ (2011).