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Living with Friction by Drawing Mazes

Bursting into the indie scene, Drawing Mazes stitches melody with meaning in their debut EP


The journey through life, with all its bumps and grinds, has rarely sounded as melodious and introspective as it does in “Living with Friction,” the debut EP from Chicago-based musical project Drawing Mazes, led by the multi-talented Chris Pusinelli. Released on May 1, 2024, this five-track EP spins a web of indie pop songs that delve into the essence of human connection and the small frictions that define our existence. With a runtime of just 14 minutes, “Living with Friction” is a compact yet rich exploration of musical landscapes and emotional depth.

Track-by-Track Brilliance

  1. Planning an Escape – This introductory track paints the soundscape with dreamlike piano melodies and gentle vocals that build into a somber yet rhythmic swing. It serves as an auditory journey toward liberation, capturing the ephemeral wish to slip away from the grips of the everyday.
  2. Stay Loose – Vibrant and brisk, this track infuses pop vigor with a dash of spontaneity, lifting spirits and inspiring a sense of adaptability amidst life’s hurdles and personal interactions. Its infectious beat and bold, experimental flourishes highlight Pusinelli’s knack for weaving together a tapestry of musical styles.
  3. Living with Friction – The centerpiece of the EP combines offbeat indie rock with a compelling, foot-tapping rhythm. It celebrates the beauty of life’s rough edges and the syncopated rhythms found within disorder. The lively drums and profound lyrics encapsulate the track’s spirited embrace of the perfectly imperfect.
  4. Perfect Therapy – Venturing into deeper, more reflective waters, this track meditates on the healing qualities of artistic expression and melody. Its introspective lyrics meld with enveloping, psychedelic arrangements to craft an atmosphere of deep contemplation and resonance.
  5. Misunderstood – Ending the EP on a note of quiet contemplation, this acoustic track underscores the value of compassion and being there for one another. Its luminous message is cradled by rich, contemplative lyrics, offering a touching finale to the musical journey.

A Sonic Tapestry of Influences

Drawing Mazes doesn’t shy away from wearing its influences on its sleeve. From the cinematic pop reminiscences of The Flaming Lips and Sufjan Stevens to the indie rock quirks of Dirty Projectors and The New Pornographers, Pusinelli melds these styles into a unique sound that’s both familiar and fresh. Additional nods to the folky, danceable duets akin to Belle & Sebastian or Arthur & Yu in tracks like “Stay Loose” add layers to the EP’s sonic diversity.

Chicago-based musical project Drawing Mazes, led by the multi-talented Chris Pusinelli

With the EP already available for streaming and a special Bonus Edition featuring demos of five extra songs set to release on Bandcamp, fans are in for a treat. Moreover, the visual component can’t be ignored—videos for “Planning an Escape” and soon the title track, available on, provide a deeper insight into the artistic vision of Drawing Mazes.

“Living with Friction” is a multi-sensory journey into the heart of indie pop, driven by Chris Pusinelli’s passionate embrace of music as a full-time pursuit. This debut is a promising start for Drawing Mazes and a harbinger of the musical innovation that lies ahead. As we await a full-length album in 2025, “Living with Friction” firmly plants Drawing Mazes as a name to watch in the indie music scene.