Car Seat Headrest began in 2010 in Will Toledo’s hometown of Leesburg, Virginia. Needing a place of solitude (and soundproofing) where he could record vocals undisturbed, a 17-year-old Toledo set up shop in the family car. Toledo’s catalogue is sharp, literary, and culturally omnivorous as it touches upon youth and death, love and depression, drunken parties and 2nd century theologians. Ever surprising, his lyrical imagery ranges from playful to sexually frank to sorrowful, often within the same song.

After relocating to the Seattle suburbs in 2014, Toledo assembled a lineup with bassist Ethan Ives and drummer Andrew Katz. Teens of Style, the first Car Seat Headrest album recorded with a full band, was vibrant and powerful, with a wide stylistic range.

When Matador released Teens of Denial in 2016 – his first real ‘studio’ record – Toledo moved from bedroom pop to something approaching classic- rock grandeur and huge (if detailed and personal) narrative ambitions, with nods to the Cars, Pavement, Jonathan Richman, Wire, and William Onyeabor.

Toledo revisited Twin Fantasy, his 2011 Bandcamp album, for a “re-recorded and re-imagined” version, which came out in February 2018 on Matador. Something for the fans, new and old alike, the release saw Toledo re-examining his past, fan-favourite project, and overcoming the limitations he faced first time around, when he was recording himself on a laptop.

In May 2020, Car Seat Headrest released their hugely anticipated new album, Making A Door Less Open. Created over the course of four years, Making A Door Less Open—their first collection of entirely new music since 2016—saw Will Toledo embarking on new and imaginative roads to songwriting and recording, placing emphasis on the individual songs, each with its own special energy, rather than attempting to draw a coherent storyteller narrative through the album as he has in the past, resulting in his most dynamic and open-ended work to date.

“[Madlo is] some of the most direct and accessible music Toledo has ever made. What’s new here, apart from the rippling synth lines and programmed beats, is the sense of fresh-start possibility and hard-won optimism that infuses nearly every track.” – New York Times

“The most dynamic and commercially assured album in Car Seat’s winding discography – is actually an invitation to cut loose… in a meticulously crafted momentum of seductive choruses, classic-rock brawn and dancefloor-release” – MOJO ****