After half a decade rising from SoundCloud phenom to bona-fide radio staple, Lauv is ready to finally release his debut studio album. But before ~how I’m feeling~ drops next month, the singer-songwriter-producer held a private listening session and Q&A at the AWAL and Kobalt offices in New York with some of his biggest professional and artistic champions, as well members of the media, to lay the groundwork for the LP.
After guests were treated to finger foods, beers and wine, the small audience got cozy in couches and chairs around two stools, two microphones and an acoustic guitar for Lauv and team to play a handful of new tracks from the forthcoming record. Sipping a tall glass of red wine in a pink sweatpants and a hoodie, Lauv shared a mix of self-deprecating jokes and honest reflections on coping with OCD and mania while creating the ~how I’m feeling~ — all of which earning supportive cheers, and occasional whoops, from the audience which all elicit the singer’s signature smirky smile.
There were eight songs shared with the audience including standouts like the beat drop–centered “Invisible Things” (a sonic self-acceptance journey where Lauv shares how he embraced his “feminine male” self), the thumping Alessia Cara collaboration “Canada” (where admits there was not a particular conscious decision to put an actual Canadian on a song titled “Canada”), his future Latin-pop single “El Tejano” with Sofia Reyes (which the star described as “spicy Lauv,” and sees Reyes sing in both English and Spanish), as well as his “favorite song” from the album, “Modern Loneliness,” where he came to sit in the audience to let the emotional track’s audio fully wash over him.
Q&A host Kevan Kenny introduced one of the album’s most anticipated tracks with “It’s going to be funny to drop this artist’s name without a ton of screaming teenagers in front of me,” indicating that the room would now get to hear “Who,” Lauv’s second collaboration with BTS after the band recruited him for their “Make It Right (Remix)” that is currently in its 13th week on the Pop Songs radio airplay chart this week. Lauv shared that he was lucky enough to witness BTS’ sold-out London show concert at Wembley Stadium, saying, “I’ve never seen an artist play a stadium without an opener and are just engaged the entire time,” sharing details of a backstage meetup where the guys showed him songs like “The Story Never Ends” on their personal playlists.
After their “Make It Right” remix successfully came together, Lauv said he sent a song that would eventually become “Who” to BTS having “no expectations” that the group would agree. After describing what he called a “very cool, very interesting, very mysterious” process of sending watermarked vocals back and forth, Lauv called the emotional track “epic” and “one of [his] favorite songs.” While the host asked what it was like receiving a recording with seven different members versus his usual one-person collabs like Troye Sivan and Anne-Marie, the first play of “Who” actually appears to feature only BTS singers Jimin and Jungkook with their clean and fluttery vocals unmistakable as they sing about how “you’re not the girl I fell in love with…you’re not the same.”
Lauv included one live performance in the session, an acoustic take on new track “For Now” that proved his vocals in real life are just like they are on the record, giving the encouraging room all the more reason to look forward to getting even deeper into ~how I’m feeling~ when it drops in full on March 6.
Take a look at the latest video released from the album, “Tattoos Together,” below: