It didn’t take long for Foreign Air to realize they had a winning formula on their hands. Written and recorded before they even had a name for themselves, the pair’s first single, 2015’s “Free Animal,” was an instant smash, quickly generating millions of streams on Spotify and soundtracking a massive Nike ad campaign. While much has changed for the band since those early days, the childlike sense of joy and wonder that fueled their rise hasn’t gone anywhere. In fact, as the duo’s full-length debut, ‘Good Morning Stranger,’ demonstrates, it’s only grown stronger with time. Written and recorded all over the country, the album is a trippy, intoxicating collection, one that blends indie rock, hip-hop, and Britpop as it mixes vintage synthesizers and hypnotic beats with manipulated samples and wildly adventurous production. Songs twist and turn without warning, stopping on a dime only to transfigure themselves into something wholly new and unexpected. Clasen’s vocals are similarly chameleon-like, shifting effortlessly between airy falsetto and muscular bravado throughout. The result is a record that’s as eclectic as it is addictive, an ambitious, immersive debut that nods to everything from Alt-J and Beck to Pink Floyd and J Dilla as it playfully subverts expectations with a seemingly endless parade of sonic surprises.
“We both came from rock bands, but we wanted to do something neither of us had ever done before with this project,” says Michael. “That was the idea behind our name, that we were going to dive into something totally unfamiliar and the music would be this blast of fresh, invigorating, foreign air.”
“Our whole approach in the studio was just to try and excite each other,” continues Clasen. “The guiding principle was to be present in the moment, to feed off of each other’s energy, to see how far we could push ourselves creatively.”
‘Good Morning Stranger’ builds off the remarkable success of the bi-coastal band’s self-released singles, which have accumulated more than a hundred million streams across platforms, appeared in hit television series on Netflix, Showtime, ABC, TNT, Vice, and Fox, and landed spots in global campaigns for major brands like Samsung, Vodafone, and Microsoft. Critics were quick to take note, with Billboard hailing the band as “transcendent” and Interview dubbing them “one of the most exciting emerging acts on the interweb.” The pair’s captivating live show, meanwhile, helped earn them festival slots from Shaky Knees to Hangout alongside high-profile dates with the likes of Phantogram, Misterwives, Bishop Briggs, and more.