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Eoin Murray
12 January 2023, 10:50

Premiere: Mera Bhai ‘Evil Butter (feat. Stealing Sheep)’

The Flamingods and Daytimers member’s new EP, ‘Relax Into Yourself’, lands in April

Premiere: Mera Bhai ‘Evil Butter (feat. Stealing Sheep)’

Mera Bhai has announced the release of his ‘Relax Into Yourself’ EP with a brand new single, ‘Evil Butter’, featuring Liverpool art-pop group Stealing Sheep. Listen below. 

The DJ, producer and multi-instrumentalist – who plays in the London and Bahrain-based psych rock group, Flamingods, and is a core member of the Daytimers collective – follows his October 2022 single ‘Be This Way (feat. Private Joy)’ with a melodic, dancefloor-tuned track packed with classic Brazilian funk samples, velvety bass, and intoxicating keys and vocals that, as he puts it, “make it feel a bit like you’re rushing/coming up."

The track examines the complicated, and often culturally appropriative, nature of self-care and self-help, and the grip these concepts can have over people in a commercialised world. With its lyrics being loosely based on the language of self-help books from ‘90s and ‘00s, Mera Bhai described the writing process as an attempt to "mirror how we get fed all these fake messages of empowerment by the media trying to convince us what’s good for us; I think we become a bit hypnotised by it and start to align ourselves with it, when actually there is something about it that never quite feels right.”

“Growing up, I always spent a lot of time reading, some of which included Hindu and Buddhist philosophy (very much influenced by my Indian heritage),” he added. “Many of the contemporary writers bridged into the ‘New Age/Self Help’ arena, which I also ended up reading quite a lot of. It was clear that a lot of the ideas brought over from Hindu/Buddhist philosophy ended up being appropriated, and becoming seriously commercialised, which I find fascinating. Beyond self-help alone, look at what Yoga has become to our society. I think that’s a clear indication of where it’s been taken from what it is supposed to be: a spiritual practice. Goat Yoga, Wine Yoga, Heavy Metal Yoga, etc. All of this feels like evil butter to me.

“I think I kind of wanted the audience to be left wondering what it’s about, and what evil butter really is, or what it means. The question and the conversation is pretty tenuous, which is a nice opportunity to have interesting conversations. I’m intrigued to see what assertions people make.”

Speaking about his collaboration with Stealing Sheep on the track, he said: “They have such a strong anti-establishment vibe to them even though they are loved by press and radio. Their tracks seem to always have coded messages too, which very much fitted with the vibe on this track. When I’m working on stuff, I know that when the moment is right I can always hear who I think needs to be on it instrumentally or vocally. I could totally hear them on it, so I reached out to them and they were very up for it. We never actually had the chance to be in the studio together, as this happened during the pandemic, but they were such a pleasure to work with. They really took the time to make the track something special. They sent me hundreds of stems to play with, loads of takes, layers, and added bits. It was a privilege to work with them on it.”

The ‘Relax Into Yourself’ EP will be released on 7th April via his own Morning Raga Records.

The release follows Mera Bhai’s 2020 debut EP, ‘Futureproofing’, on Moshi Moshi.  

Photo credit: Sam Rockman @rockersalmighty