Though Thibaut Berland, who makes music as Breakbot, is best known for “Baby I’m Yours,” an upbeat confession of love, he’s not only interested in romance and sunshine. “Man Without Shadow,” premiering today on Billboard, is a lonely track about a desperate character who’s close to the edge.
“He’s been running away from the others, away from himself,” sings Irfane, who has now joined Berland as a full-time member of Breakbot. “Pouring every single drop from his mind, til there’s no one left.”
The song will appear on Still Waters, Breakbot’s first album since 2012, which hits shelves tomorrow. “Man Without Shadow” includes the phase that lends the album its title: “Trying to stay ahead of his time, still waters run deep.” A fat, dragging melody on synthesizer suggests someone shouldering forward, head down, doggedly dragging one foot after the other.
“That’s one of the songs that we worked on the most,” T tells Billboard over the phone. “We have so many versions of it. The first versions were uptempo, around 130 bpm. We were pretty happy about it, but we thought we could do something more. So we tried to slow it down. Now it’s one of the slow jams on the album — it’s not the usual Breakbot funky disco vibe.”
“It’s about our incapacity to really grasp the moment most of the time,” Irfane adds. “It’s a metaphor of this guy living in the past but forgetting about living his present.”
Listen to “Man Without Shadow” above, and look for the new record tomorrow, and pre-order it here.