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Big Thief share quietly enthralling new single “Cattails”

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In just a month’s time there will be a new Big Thief record in the world with U.F.O.F. The band kicked off this album cycle with the fantastic title track, and now they’ve dropped the second single “Cattails.” The new track takes its cues from past airy and eerie acoustic numbers of the band’s previous two releases. It’s got a stripped down, simplified sound that truly winds itself into places of utter beauty. In essence, it’s the band showing the flip side to the sound we heard on the lead single.

Speaking about the creation of the song, leader Adrianne Lenker says:

“Cattails came about while we were at the studio in Washington in the pine forest. Writing it was just one of those electric multicolored waves of connectivity just sweeping through my body. I stayed up late finishing the song and the next morning was stomping around playing it over and over again. We thought why not just record it, so James sat at the drums and we practiced and by the time we’d finished practicing, Dom Monks — our engineer — had already sneakily set up mics and recorded it. It was beautiful that he’d captured it right away because when James and I were playing it felt like a little portal in the fabric had opened and we were just flying. Listening back to it makes me cry sometimes.”

Big Thief already have a proven track record of greatness. Throughout their first two albums, and Lenker’s solo LP abysskiss from last year, they’ve proven they have some sort of mystical quality about them. The instrumental interplay is unmatched in indie music right now, as is Lenker’s phenomenal songwriting. “Cattails” exemplifies what they do so well, albeit with a more simplified sound. And yet they make the acoustic style sound like a universe of its own, one filled with fluttering colors and buzzing, moving tangles of vines. It’s basically what we all might expect from the band, but that itself is a very good thing.

Give a listen to “Cattails” down below.

U.F.O.F. is out May 3 via 4AD. Pre-order it now.

 

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