Eyedress is the nom de plume of Filipino Idris Vicuña, initially better known as the bassist of Manila psychedelic indie/noise pop band Bee Eyes. Born in Quezon City, Metro Manila in 1990, Vicuña relocated with his family to the United States at the age of five and was raised in Arizona before moving to California at the age of 13, where he discovered music, playing bass in a Crass-influenced crust punk band. In 2005, Vicuña moved back to Manila where, with his friend and fellow film student Julius Valledor, he formed Bee Eyes. The band was named for the mother of one of their friends, who accused them of being "B.I.'s" (a Filipino colloquialism for "bad influences") on her son. Bee Eyes released a couple of EPs, for which they made their own music videos, and became minor Internet celebrities after a cease-and-desist order from Sub Pop, whose logo they had copied for one of their T-shirts.
Vicuña learned from Valledor how to program hip-hop beats, and in his downtime from Bee Eyes he started work on the solo project that would eventually become Eyedress, influenced by the likes of J Dilla, Flying Lotus, Frank Ocean, and Odd Future. A few digitally released tracks stirred up buzz and got him opening slots for Grimes and How to Dress Well on their Manila tour stops; the debut Eyedress EP, Supernatural, was released in 2013. Recorded entirely on his father's laptop using free software, the EP featured Vicuña's androgynous, high-pitched vocals and a woozy, narcotic sound not dissimilar to the "witch house" trend of a couple of years previous. It was well received, and its lead track, "Nature Trips," became an Internet sensation with its chilling, low-budget video directed by Valledor. A full-length debut, Shapeshifter, followed in late 2015 on U.K. label Headcount Records, and featured a guest appearance from King Krule recording as Edgar the Breathtaker. Eyedress continued to evolve with his second full-length, 2017's Manila Ice, led by the peculiar and dreamy single "Sophia Coppola." ~ John D. Buchanan