Indie Mixtape 20: Sam Evian Isn’t Afraid To Take A ‘Plunge’ On His Fourth Studio Album

There’s a certain New Year’s tradition many people take part in: the cold plunge. It’s meant to ring in the new year with bravado. And that’s exactly what songwriter Sam Evian intended to do with his 2022 New Year’s Eve when he gathered friends on a snowy night to dive into a frigid creek in the Catskills.

And that wasn’t the only plunge Evian took. After years of writing, engineering, and producing music and three albums to his name, the songwriter is releasing his fourth studio album, aptly titled Plunge, via his newly minted label imprint Flying Cloud Recordings. And while this project marks an important milestone, he also had some help from his musical friends. Artists like Adrianne Lenker, Sufjan Stevens, and Ellen Kempner decamped to his Catskills studio to spend a 10-day period writing music. The result is Plunge, a collection of nine layered, pastoral, cathartic songs that take a rollicking approach to relationship woes.

Ahead of the release of Plunge, Evian sits down with Uproxx to talk Formula 1, Uma Thurman, and nearly drowning in our latest Q&A.

What are four words you would use to describe your music?

Waves, circles, earth, heart.

It’s 2050 and the world hasn’t ended and people are still listening to your music. How would you like it to be remembered?

That’s only 26 yrs from now so I hope I don’t need to be remembered yet.

Who’s the person who has most inspired your work, and why?

My parents, who gave me life and music.

Where did you eat the best meal of your life and what was it?

My mother’s table of course. Her grandma’s zuppa di pollo recipe.

Tell us about the best concert you’ve ever attended.

Pharoah Sanders at LPR NYC in 2017 or so.

What song never fails to make you emotional?

“Long Long Long” by George Harrison on the The Beatles (White Album).

What’s the last thing you Googled?

“Why is the Red Bull F1 team so good?”

Where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever crashed while on tour?

A museum of natural history in Szeged, Hungary.

What’s your favorite city in the world to perform and what’s the city you hope to perform in for the first time?

Currently Paris, but I’d love to perform in Rio de Janeiro. They keep saying “come to Brazil” on Instagram. I don’t know if they are serious though.

What’s one piece of advice you’d go back in time to give to your 18-year-old self?

It gets better, and then worse, and then better, and then worse, and then…

What’s one of your hidden talents?

Making fresh pasta.

If you had a million dollars to donate to charity, what cause would you support and why?

Palestinian children’s relief.

What are your thoughts about AI and the future of music?

My concerns with AI are not related to music. The potential risks to humanity are far more perverse than we could imagine. Read about the ‘control problem’ if you dare.

You are throwing a music festival. Give us the dream lineup of 5 artists that will perform with you.

Cate Le Bon, Bill Frisell, Caetano Veloso, Harumi Hosono, Floating Points.

Who’s your favorite person to follow on social media?

Perfume Genius.

What’s the story behind your first or favorite tattoo?

I almost drowned on tour and my friend Carlos from Ava Luna helped me out of the water. I got a tattoo in his honor.

What is your pre-show ritual?

It’s pretty yucky but 2 tequilas and a Red Bull does the trick.

Who was your first celebrity crush?

First was Brit in the early days but most important was Uma in Pulp Fiction.

You have a month off and the resources to take a dream vacation. Where are you going and who is coming with you?

Giant sabbatical for all my pals who are non-stop hustling to make it work. Island in the Mediterranean. On-call chef, beachside, wine cellar, sailing, stocked library.

Plunge is out 3/22 via Flying Cloud Recordings/Thirty Tigers. Find more information here.