Sylvan Esso performing in Hamburg, Germany, in 2015
|Origin||Durham, North Carolina, United States|
Sylvan Esso is an American electronic pop duo from Durham, North Carolina formed in 2013. The band consists of singer Amelia Meath (Mountain Man) and producer Nick Sanborn (Megafaun, Made of Oak). They made their debut with the single "Hey Mami" and released their eponymous debut album on Partisan Records on May 12, 2014, which reached No. 39 on the Billboard 200. They released their second album What Now with Loma Vista Recordings on April 28, 2017, which was nominated for a Grammy in the "Best Dance/Electronic Album category".
Lead singer Amelia Meath, who was at the time involved with her trio, Mountain Man, created the vocals to the song called "Play It Right". She later met electronic music producer Nick Sanborn in Milwaukee at the Cactus Club, performing at the time solo as Made of Oak, and asked him to make a rendering of her single, Play It Right, in his own way. From 2012 to 2013, the band slowly formed. Meath had returned from a year-and-a-half tour with Feist and was looking for an affordable place to live, thus landing in Durham with Sanborn and began making their album, with all of their songs being recorded in Sanborn's apartment bedroom.
Sylvan Esso is the group's eponymous debut studio album, released May 12, 2014 via Partisan Records. The album reached No. 39 on the Billboard 200 and No. 7 on the Independent Albums chart, The single "Hey Mami" was named Paste Magazine's No. 1 song of 2014. They made their network television debut on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on July 9, 2014, performing the single "Coffee". It received considerable airplay in the US, increasing the profile of the band nationally. In August 2015, the band released the single "H.S.K.T.", which included a remix by Hercules and Love Affair.
In April 2015, Sylvan Esso played both weekends of Coachella. Other 2015 dates saw the band perform at The Firefly Music Festival 2015, in Dover, DE, The Eaux Claires Music & Arts Festival in Eau Claire, Wisconsin on July 18 and on July 25 at the Wayhome Festival in Oro Medonte, Canada. Sylvan Esso played on Friday, July 31, 2015 at Lollapalooza in Chicago, Illinois. The group also performed both weekends of the 2015 Austin City Limits Music Festival in Austin, Texas.
Meath and Sanborn married in June 2016.
In September 2016 the band released the single "Radio" back to back with "Kick Jump Twist". A video for the latter appeared in January 2017. In late February the group released the single "Die Young" along with a music video and an announcement regarding their new album, titled What Now.
On April 28, 2017, the band released their second studio album What Now on Loma Vista Recordings. The album received mostly positive reviews. In May 2017, they performed at the Boston Calling Music Festival. The duo began their What Now US 2017 Tour on May 13, 2017. The tour ended in November 2017.
On November 28, 2017 the album received a Grammy nomination in the category "Best Dance/Electronic Album."
They performed at Eaux Claires in Eau Claire, Wisconsin on June 17, 2017, the Melt! Festival in Ferropolis, Germany and the Citadel Festival in London, United Kingdom in July 2017. They also performed at the Latitude Festival in Suffolk, England, in July 2017. In October 2018, they performed at the Austin City Limits Music Festival in Austin, Texas.